Israel signed an official contract with Pfizer on Friday for the purchase of eight million of its coronavirus vaccine doses.
The eight million doses will be enough for only four million Israelis since each person requires two doses of the vaccine. According to a Ynet report, Israel requested 18.5 million doses but Pfizer is unable to supply more than 8 million due to prior contracts in the US and Europe.
The vaccines should begin arriving in Israel in January, subject to FDA and Israel’s Health Ministry approval. Pfizer is expected to apply for FDA approval at the end of November.
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu spoke with Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla on Wednesday in an effort to finalize a deal and the two discussed Bourla’s Jewish heritage.
“Albert Bourla is very proud of his Greek heritage and of his Jewish heritage, from Thessaloniki,” Netanyahu said in a video posted on social media on Wednesday. “After this conversation, which was very productive and very practical, I’m convinced we will complete the contract with Pfizer.”
Israel has also signed a contract to purchase vaccines from U.S. companies Moderna and Arcturus and Hadassah Ein Kerem preordered 1.5 million does of the Russian Sputnik V vaccine, subject to Health Ministry approval.
Israel is also working on its own Brilife vaccine, developed by the Israel Institute for Biological Research.
(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)