Health Minister Jens Spahn
Germany plans to pay vaccine manufacturers an annual reservation fee to build up reserve capacity of around 600-700 million doses per year to help it fight future pandemics, Health Minister Jens Spahn said on Wednesday.
The government plans to launch a call for tenders for so-called pandemic preparedness contracts with a five-year term so that vaccine doses "can be activated quickly if the worst comes to the worst," Spahn told a news conference.
Manufacturing setbacks and an over-reliance on European Union approval for supplies slowed Germany's rollout of COVID-19 vaccines. It wants to boost domestic production to ensure it is not deprived of shots in future pandemics.
To that end, it set up a vaccine task force in February that aims to reduce bottlenecks by ensuring production of vital products in the supply chain like glass vials and lipids.
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