The British and Thai governments said on Monday that Thailand has agreed to manufacture and supply AstraZeneca’s vaccine across Thailand and wider southeast Asia region.
The vaccine is still under development with Oxford University, and is currently leading the global race for a vaccine.
The announcement did not reveal financial terms of the deal, or how many doses would be distributed in Thailand.
“With the expected technology transfer from AstraZeneca and following Thai FDA [Food and Drug Administration] regulatory approval, the company is aiming to have the first batch of vaccines available in the middle of next year,” said Satitpong Sukvimol, the chairman of Thai company Siam Bioscience, according to Reuters.
A British government statement said: “COVID-19 is an unprecedented global threat. No one is safe until we are all safe. The UK funded the development of this, the University of Oxford COVID-19 vaccine, a leading candidate globally. British-Swedish pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca is working with Oxford University to make the vaccine globally available.
“The UK is committed to ensuring rapid and equitable global access to safe, effective vaccines, therapeutics and diagnostics for COVID-19. We are working, including by hosting summits and events and through donations, to fund a COVID-19 vaccine in developing countries so that we can all be vaccinated.”
It added that the deal was a “key step in countering the pandemic in Thailand and Southeast Asia more broadly.”
British Ambassador Brian Davidson to Bangkok said: “Defeating COVID-19 is — and needs to be — a global endeavor, the work of scientists, multi-laterals, and businesses as well as governments. It is a pleasure to witness the start of this critical partnership between Thailand’s Ministry of Public Health, Siam BioScience, [Thai company] SCG, and AstraZeneca.”
Meanwhile, the US announced it had agreed to pay $486 million to AstraZeneca to develop the antibody treatment and secure up to 100,000 doses.
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