Japan earmarks $6.3bln for purchase of 280mln doses of COVID-19 vaccines

Tokyo, Sep 8 (Sputnik) The Japanese government announced on Tuesday the decision to allocate 671.4 billion yen ($6.3 billion) to secure the purchase of 280 million doses vaccines against the coronavirus disease.
Following a cabinet meeting, Japan has decided to buy 120 million doses of a vaccine being developed by the US pharmaceutical giant, Pfizer, and another 120 million doses from the UK’s AstraZeneca. In addition, negotiations are underway to purchase another batch of 40 million doses from the US company Moderna. All the three are conducting phase three clinical trials.
The funds will be allocated from the so-called emergency budget reserves of 11.5 trillion yen, included in two packages of additional economic measures to combat the coronavirus.
Japanese Health Minister Kato Katsunobu said during a press conference that “once the negotiations are over, we will try to provide everyone with the vaccine by the first half of next year.”
Japan has so far confirmed 71,856 COVID-19 cases and 1,363 related fatalities, according to the World Health Organization’s data.


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