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After Moderna, India likely to close deal with Pfizer Covid vaccine: Govt

Pfizer Inc is in the final stages to get approval for the coronavirus vaccine in India. (REUTERS)Premium
Pfizer Inc is in the final stages to get approval for the coronavirus vaccine in India. (REUTERS)

  • Last week Pfizer's chief executive Albert Bourla said that the company was in the final stages to get approval for the coronavirus vaccine in India
  • On Tuesday, the DCGI granted approval to Cipla Ltd to import the COVID-19 vaccine developed by Moderna Inc

Hours after approving Moderna's Covid vaccine for restricted emergency use in the country, the Centre added that it would close the deal with Pfizer Inc, another US Covid-19 vaccine manufacturing firm, very soon.

In a media statement Dr VK Paul, Member-Health, Niti Aayog said, "There are four vaccines now Covaxin, Covishield, SputnikV and Moderna. We will soon close the deal on Pfizer as well".

It must be noted that last week Pfizer's chief executive Albert Bourla said that the company was in the final stages to get approval for the coronavirus vaccine in India. " I hope very soon we will finalise an agreement with the govt," Bourla had said.

The Pfizer-BioNTech shot has been approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (US FDA), and other western regulators for emergency use. The vaccine is also authorised for use in teens in the US.

It has an efficacy of over 90% in preventing the infection.

Meanwhile, on Tuesday, the Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) granted approval to Cipla Ltd to import the COVID-19 vaccine developed by Moderna Inc for restricted emergency use.

Moderna's shot will be the fourth vaccine in India after AstraZeneca's Covishield, Bharat Biotech's Covaxin and Sputnik V developed by Russia's Gamaleya Institute.

Moderna on June 27 informed DCGI that the US government has agreed to donate a certain number of doses of its COVID-19 vaccine through COVAX to India for use here and sought an approval from the Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO) for the vaccines.

In a bid to expedite the rollout of vaccines, the DCGI on June 1 decided to waive testing of batches at Central Drugs Laboratory (CDL) for foreign-manufactured vaccines that have been approved by international drug regulators such as the US FDA, the UK's MHRA or the WHO.

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