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Health

Israel in talks with Pfizer over potential COVID-19 vaccine, PM says

FILE PHOTO: Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu visits the new COVID-19 checking system at Ben-Gurion International Airport, near Tel Aviv, Israel November 9, 2020. Ohad Zwigenberg/Pool via REUTERS/File Photo

JERUSALEM (Reuters) - Israel is in talks with drugmaker Pfizer Inc over its potential COVID-19 vaccine, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Wednesday, although it has not signed any deals yet.

Pfizer said on Monday that its experimental COVID-19 vaccine was more than 90% effective, a major victory in the fight against a pandemic that has killed more than a million people, battered the global economy and upended daily life.

Numerous countries have signed deals with the company already to receive millions of doses of its candidate vaccine.

Netanyahu said in a statement that he had spoken with the company’s Chief Executive Officer Albert Bourla.

“After this conversation, which was very practical and to the point, I am convinced that we will complete the contract with Pfizer,” said Netanyahu.

Israel already has an agreement with Moderna Inc for the future purchase of its potential vaccine and has been in talks with other companies as well. It has also started human trials on its own vaccine candidate.

Reporting by Maayan Lubell; Editing by Alison Williams

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