AstraZeneca promises to deliver 61m doses by year-end, working on more effective formula for 2022
AstraZeneca will deliver 61 million doses of its Covid-19 vaccine before the year-end, while the government is planning to order a new formula of the vaccine from the company next year to cope with mutated strains, government spokesman Anucha Burapachaisri said on Monday.
“Prime Minister General Prayut Chan-o-cha had an online meeting with AstraZeneca’s chief executive officer Pascal Claude Roland Soriot on Monday, during which the company promised to deliver 61 million doses of the vaccine by December-end,” he said.
“This will bring the total number of vaccines that the government has procured so far to 120 million doses, covering about 60 million of the population. It also exceeds the original target of purchasing vaccines for 50 million people before the end of 2021,” Anucha said.
“AstraZeneca’s promise is great news because it would bring us closer to achieving herd immunity. This would help the economy to recover and allow Thais to return to their normal lifestyles sooner than expected,” he added.
Anucha said that as for next year’s plans, the PM and AstraZeneca’s CEO have been discussing the possibility of vaccine developments to tackle the increasing number of mutated strains of the virus.
“AstraZeneca said it is developing a new formula of the vaccine with increased efficacy against new variants,” Anucha said.
“The government is planning to buy another 60 million doses of the new formula in 2022. We estimate that a contract will be drafted and signed by September-end this year,” he added.