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World News

Israel says it will sign deal for Pfizer coronavirus vaccine

FILE PHOTO: Pfizer's logo is reflected in a drop on a syringe needle in this illustration taken November 9, 2020. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration/File Photo

JERUSALEM (Reuters) - Israel will sign a provisional deal with Pfizer Inc PFE.N on Friday to receive 8 million doses of the drugmaker's still-experimental coronavirus vaccine from January, the Israeli health minister said.

The deal, implementation of which would be subject to approval by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and Israel’s Health Ministry, would provide vaccines for close to half of the Israeli population, Health Minister Yuli Edelstein said.

“The supply would begin in January 2021, with the remainder arriving throughout the course of 2021,” he said in a statement on Thursday, adding that the order would be for 8 million doses, enough for 4 million people.

Pfizer and its partner BioNTech SE 22UAy.F confirmed the deal in a Thursday statement and said it would not disclose financial details but deal terms would be tied to the timing of delivery and the volume of doses provided.

“Our goal remains to create a global supply of a safe and effective COVID-19 vaccine for many people around the world, as quickly as we can,” said Sean Marett, the chief business officer at BioNTech, in a statement.

Pfizer on Monday announced that its experimental COVID-19 vaccine had been more than 90% effective based on initial trial results, a major victory in the war against a virus that has killed over a million people and battered the world’s economy.

A spokesman for Pfizer said final signing will take place on Friday.

Writing by Dan Williams; editing by Jonathan Oatis and Sam Holmes

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