Mumbai : US drug maker Pfizer said on Tuesday it will have differential pricing for its Covid-19 vaccine as the company starts delivering millions of doses to countries where it expects to receive regulatory approval in the coming months.
Differential, or tiered pricing, is when prices are set depending on the GDP of a country.
“We will have tiered pricing for middle-income countries (India is considered a middle-income country) and we will give it for free in Africa,” Albert Bourla, CEO of Pfizer, said at a press conference organised by the International Federation of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers and Associations.
In the US, where the Food and Drug Administration approved the company’s vaccine, Pfizer has set a price of $19.50 for a single dose.
“This is the price of one meal,” Bourla said, adding that Pfizer is in negotiations with governments around the world.
The mRNA technology-based vaccine has an efficacy of over 90% with a double dose and 67% with a single dose.
Last week, New York-based Pfizer sought emergency-use approval for its Covid-19 vaccine from Indian regulators. A decision will be taken by the Subject Expert Committee in the coming weeks.
Pfizer/BioNTech’s vaccine was developed in record time and launched as part of the formal vaccination drive by the UK government on Tuesday, making it the first Covid-19 vaccine to be administered anywhere in the world.
While the vaccine relies on new and safe technology, the -70C storage requirement could become an issue in countries with poor storage facilities. Pfizer is working on another version of the vaccine that requires less stringent storage requirements.
While Pfizer has said it will sell its vaccine for profit, Janssen Pharma, a part of Johnson & Johnson, said it will sell its Covid-19 vaccine at cost. “We won’t be selling the vaccine for profit as we developed it with multiple partners,” said Paul Stoffels, chief scientific officer, Janssen Pharma.