Daily Memo: The Race for a Coronavirus Vaccine

If a vaccine is developed, who has first rights to receive it?

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Vaccine nationalism. The CEO of French drugmaking company Sanofi SA, Paul Hudson, said in an interview that the United States would likely get first dibs on any COVID-19 vaccine that it develops, with the remainder of its capacity going to Europe and the world. The firm is in the process of expediting vaccine development and access in partnership with the United Kingdom’s GlaxoSmithKline Plc. The U.S. Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority has contributed $30 million to Sanofi’s efforts. The statement sparked outrage among European countries and forced Sanofi into issuing a string of clarifications. France’s deputy finance minister said it would be “unacceptable” for the U.S. to receive priority access, while assuring French citizens that a vaccine would be readily available in every country. Sanofi France’s president on Wednesday tried to calm nerves by saying that a potential vaccine would be equally available to the U.S., France and Europe, and French Prime Minister Edouard Philippe tweeted Thursday that the company’s chairman had given him the “necessary assurances” about the vaccine’s distribution in France. The company has also argued that its statement was intended to galvanize European pharmaceutical companies to work faster and to encourage Europe to shift its $8 […]

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