Officials on Tuesday revealed that the European Union will purchase an additional 100 million doses of the vaccine, as the union move forward with plans to inoculate its 450 million-person population.
“We decided to take an additional 100 million doses of the BioNTech/Pfizer vaccine, which is already being used to vaccinate people across the EU,” European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen announced on Twitter on Tuesday. The purchase will bring the EU's total number of Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine doses to 300 million.
In a news release, Pfizer and BioNTech confirmed that they will be supplying 100 million doses of the vaccine to the European Union next year, in accordance with the terms of the bloc’s Advanced Purchase Agreement signed on November 11.
— Ursula von der Leyen (@vonderleyen) December 29, 2020
“We remain committed to moving as quickly and safely as possible to bring this vaccine to more people in Europe, as the deadly virus continues to spread at an alarming rate,” said Pfizer Chairman and CEO Albert Bourla. “In partnership with the European Commission, member states and healthcare providers, we will be able to reach a total of 150 million Europeans across the continent.”
“The additional 100 million doses will be delivered in 2021 supporting the vaccination campaigns which started two days ago in all 27 member states. Our goal remains to bring a safe and effective COVID-19 vaccine to as many people as we can all around the world,” Ugur Sahin, CEO and co-founder of BioNTech, also noted in the news release.
In its first contract with the EU, Pfizer and BioNTech agreed to provide 200 million doses to the bloc at $18.80 per dose. The additional doses will be sold at the same price, and all 300 million doses are expected to be delivered in 2020 and 2021.
Over the weekend, European Union countries started receiving their first shipments of the COVID-19 vaccine. Vulnerable people and medical workers will be the first to receive shots.
The European Union is expected to approve Moderna's COVID-19 vaccine for use next month. It has already purchased 160 million doses of the Moderna drug.