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Argentina and Mexico to make AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine for Latin America

The deal between AstraZeneca and mAbxience of the INSUD Group includes technology to initially produce 150 million doses of the vaccine for all of Latin America except Brazil

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Argentina and Mexico will produce the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine for most of Latin America, Argentine President Alberto Fernandez said after a meeting with company executives involved in the project.

An agreement signed between British pharma company AstraZeneca and the biotechnology company mAbxience of the INSUD Group includes transfer of technology to initially produce 150 million doses of the vaccine to supply all of Latin America with the exception of Brazil, the Argentine government said.

“Latin American production will be handled in Argentina and Mexico and that will allow timely and efficient access for all countries in the region,” Fernandez said.

Marcelo Ebrard, Foreign Minister of Mexico said later on Twitter that the deal had been pushed by Fernandez and Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, Mexican President. He said output of the vaccine could extend to 250 million doses.

AstraZeneca has long operations in Argentina. The company signed a deal with the foundation of Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim for production of the vaccine, which is expected to be delivered in the first half of 2021, pending Phase III studies and regulatory approvals.

Mexico would provide more details on Thursday, said Ebrard, who thanked the Slim Foundation for financing production.

Arturo Elias, Slim’s spokesman, said a “very significant” sum was being invested in the scheme, without giving a figure.

“There’s a major economic commitment regardless of whether the vaccine works,” he told Reuters, noting that the foundation would start work immediately.

(Edits by BP News Bureau)

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