The French pharmaceutical company Sanofi has turned back on an explicit pledge to bring every future Covid-19 vaccine on the US market as a priority.
Paul Hudson, CEO of Sanofi, sparked a row by claiming that the US government has “the right to the highest pre-order because it has invested in taking the risk.”
French Premier Edouard Philippe replied by saying that access was “non-negotiable” for everyone.
Chairman Sanofi has now vowed equal access for all.
“I’m going to be incredibly clear: no particular advance will be made for any region,” Serge Weinberg told France 2 TV.
He said the words about Mr Hudson were twisted.
Sanofi vaccine will be available
Prime Minister Philippe said he had spoken to Mr Weinberg and received “all the assurance that they will distribute the possible Sanofi vaccine.”
President Emmanuel Macron said recent studies have demonstrated that a vaccine will not be vulnerable to market pressures, and next week he will meet top officials from Sanofi.
The EU has focused on ensuring fair access to a vaccine for all nations. “The Covid-19 vaccine should be a global public good and also its access should be equal and universal”. European Commission spokesperson Stefan de Keersmaecker said, quoted by the news agency AFP.
The deadly coronavirus pandemic has made the hunt for a Covid-19 vaccine the highest priority for laboratories around the world. With tremendous pressure to speed up a cycle that also usually takes years to produce.
The EU presided over a regional internet conference earlier this month to improve coronavirus science. And also received $8bn (£6.5bn) commitments from some 40 countries and donors. The money is for the development of a coronavirus vaccine and Covid-19 therapies.
The United Kingdom co-hosted the summit but the United States and Russia did not attend.
Sanofi’s Covid-19 vaccine study gets some funds from the U.S. Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (Barda). But Sanofi has received tens of millions of euros in tax credits. From the French government in recent years to assist his research.