Australia orders more COVID-19 vaccines for a total of 135 million doses


Scott Morrison said the government would buy 40 million doses of the vaccine from Novavax.


The Australian government has agreed to purchase two more COVID-19 vaccines under development, boosting the country’s potential pandemic arsenal to 135 million doses as it aims to complete a mass inoculation program in just a few month.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison said on Thursday the government would buy 40 million doses of the vaccine from Novavax and 10 million from Pfizer and BioNTech.

This is in addition to the 85 million doses that Australia has already pledged to purchase from AstraZeneca and CSL Ltd if the trials prove successful, bringing the country’s total planned spending to A $ 3.2 billion (2, $ 3 billion).

“We don’t put all of our eggs in one basket,” Morrison told reporters in Sydney.

Health Minister Greg Hunt said the Novavax and Pfizer-BioNTech vaccines, which will be made in the United States and Europe, will complement AstraZeneca and CSL products, which will be made in Australia.

“This means that we are now in a very strong position with the portfolio of four different vaccines, two proteins, a viral vector and an MRMA, which is the Pfizer vaccine, and that’s innovative – the world has never had a MRMA vaccine previously, ”Hunt told the Nine Network television station.

The Pfizer-BioNTech, AstraZeneca and Novavax vaccines are considered one of the leading candidates in the global race for regulatory approval.

If the trials prove successful, Australia expects to receive the first batches of the AstraZeneca vaccine in early 2021 and begin a mass deployment in March that will be completed by the end of the year.

If all four vaccines hit the market, Australia and its population of 26 million will end up with overdoses, even considering that many developing candidates require two doses to be effective.

Australia has announced plans to donate any excess doses to Pacific island countries and has pledged to spend around A $ 525 million to ensure full immunization coverage for Pacific countries and East Timor.


Australia is the largest aid donor to the Pacific Islands and has sought in recent months to step up its engagement for fear of risking being overshadowed by Chinese aid and financial support.

Zero local transmission

The announcement of planned new vaccine purchases came as Australia has not recorded any locally transmitted COVID-19 cases in the past 24 hours for the second time in a week. The country recorded Sunday the first day without any local case since early June.

Australia has reported just over 27,600 coronavirus cases and 907 deaths, far fewer than most other developed countries thanks to extensive testing, contact tracing and lockdowns.

As the number of national cases has slowed to less than 10 each day, states and territories have reopened their borders and relaxed different levels of social distancing restrictions.

Qantas Airways on Thursday said it would increase the number of flights between the states of New South Wales and Victoria after officials announced Wednesday that border restrictions would be lifted later this month.

The national carrier will increase from the ten round-trip flights it currently operates each week between Sydney and Melbourne to more than 250 weekly flights between the two states. The Sydney-Melbourne road was one of the busiest in the world before the pandemic.

(This story was not edited by GalacticGaming staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)


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