Israel signed an agreement with Pfizer and Moderna on Monday for the purchase of millions of additional coronavirus vaccine doses for 2022.
The deals, announced by Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Health Minister Yuli Edelstein, include the possibility of purchasing millions of additional doses if needed. Also, the doses will be adapted to variants that may arise, if necessary.
The announcement did not specify the number of doses to be purchased from each company but according to Israeli media reports, Israel is buying 18 million doses from both companies at the cost of about NIS 1.5 billion ($460 million).
Israel’s purchase of additional vaccines has been stalled until now due to a political squabble between Netanyahu and Defense Minister Benny Gantz, with the latter refusing to convene the coronavirus cabinet to approve the purchase of more vaccines until Netanyahu appoints a new justice minister.
According to Channel 12 News, the purchase is being funded via unused funds from the Finance Ministry, eliminating the need for a cabinet vote.
“There were some obstacles that we had to overcome and we found a way to overcome them,” Netanyahu said. “Israel will once again lead the world in the fight against the coronavirus.”
(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)