Serum Institute of India (SII) expects to launch Covovax, the Covid vaccine developed by American vaccinemaker Novavax, by August, CEO Adar Poonawalla said on Wednesday. The Pune-headquartered company will begin stockpiling this vaccine, which it will test on the Indian population in a bridging study, next month.
Speaking at the Bloomberg Equity Summit, Poonawalla said, SII will start stockpiling the product starting in April, so that they can then distribute the minute they get a licence. However, he added, it has become difficult for companies to reach their goal of supplying 2 billion doses by the end of the year to COVAX — the global Covid-19 vaccine facility under GAVI, The Vaccine Alliance, CEPI and WHO.
Poonawalla said, it would take another 3-4 months for COVAX to receive the required doses from different manufacturers 'because of vaccine nationalism.'