Argentina, Mexico To Produce AstraZeneca’s Covid-19 Vaccine Candidate

Argentina and Mexico will manufacture the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine for most of Latin America, said Argentine President Alberto Fernandez according to a Reuters report citing a meeting with company executives involved in the project.

The agreement signed between AstraZeneca (AZN) and the biotechnology company mAbxience of the INSUD Group includes transfer of technology to initially produce 150 million doses of the vaccine to supply all of Latin America with the exception of Brazil, the Argentine government said.

“Latin American production will be handled in Argentina and Mexico and that will allow timely and efficient access for all countries in the region,” Fernandez said.

Mexican Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard said on Twitter that output of the vaccine could extend to 250 million doses.

AstraZeneca earlier this week announced that it has entered into an agreement with Shenzhen Kangtai Biological Products to manufacture and supply its coronavirus vaccine candidate AZD1222, which its is developing, together with Oxford University, in mainland China.

The British pharmaceutical company has in recent weeks signed supply chain agreements for the capacity to produce 2 billion doses of its vaccine candidate. The drugmaker has inked supply deals with the U.S. and European Union countries.  Late-stage Phase II/III trials are currently underway in the UK, Brazil and South Africa and are due to start in the US, AstraZeneca said.

AZD1222 is one of several vaccine candidates supported by Operation Warp Speed (OWS), the U.S. government program to accelerate the development, manufacturing, and distribution of COVID-19 vaccines available for Americans by Jan. 2021.

AstraZeneca shares have advanced 13% this year as the drugmaker joined the list of companies engaged in the development of a potential coronavirus vaccine. (See AstraZeneca stock analysis on TipRanks)

Looking ahead, the $81.84 average analyst price target puts the upside potential at a promising 45% in the coming 12 months. Overall, the stock scores a Strong Buy consensus from the analyst community based on 3 unanimous Buy ratings.

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