WORLD

Countries Call On Drug Companies To Share Vaccine Know-How

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Production personnel perform a visual inspection of filled vaccine vials inside the Incepta plant on the outskirts of Dhaka in Bangladesh Saturday Feb. 13, 2021. In an industrial neighborhood on the outskirts of Bangladesh's largest city lies a factory with gleaming new equipment imported from Germany, its immaculate hallways lined with hermetically sealed rooms. Yet the factory is operating at just a quarter of its capacity. It is one of three factories that The Associated Press found on three continents whose owners say they could start producing hundreds of millions of COVID-19 vaccines on short notice if only they had the blueprints and technical know-how. (AP Photo/Al-emrun Garjon)

(AP) — Across Africa and Southeast Asia, governments and aid groups, as well as the World Health Organization, are increasingly calling on pharmaceutical companies to share their coronavirus vaccine know-how and technology more broadly. They say it’s the only way to meet a huge global shortfall in a pandemic that already has claimed over 2.5 million lives. The Associated Press found three factories on three continents who say they could make hundreds of millions of doses beginning in weeks. Pharmaceutical companies that took taxpayer money from the U.S. or Europe to develop inoculations at unprecedented speed say they are negotiating contracts and exclusive licensing deals with producers on a case-by-case basis to protect their intellectual property and for safety.

 

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