AstraZeneca AZN.L could start profiting from its COVID-19 vaccine as soon as July next year, the Financial Times reported on Wednesday, citing a memo showing the British drugmaker can declare when it considers the pandemic to have ended.
The London-listed firm previously said it would not profit from the vaccine “during the pandemic”, and the report attributes the development to a memorandum of understanding signed this year between AstraZeneca and Brazilian public health organization, Fiocruz. (on.ft.com/3lgC0Xo)
AstraZeneca, which developed the vaccine with Oxford University, signed multiple supply-and-manufacture deals for more than 3 billion doses globally, although details on the terms have been scant.
According to FT, the “Pandemic Period” could be further extended beyond July 1, 2021, but only if Cambridge, England-based AstraZeneca “acting in good faith considers that the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic is not over.”
AstraZeneca did not immediately respond to a Reuters request for comment.
Pricing and supply of experimental COVID-19 vaccines have been widely debated as richer countries pump billions of dollars into funding, and AstraZeneca has also been granted protection from future liability claims.