The company plans to produce one billion doses over the next one year, half of these will be distributed in India

Pune-based Serum Institute of India (SII) has moved closer to finding a vaccine for Covid-19, a significant step towards battling the ongoing Coronavirus crisis, Mumbai Mirror has reported.

In an interview to the publication, company CEO Adar Poonawalla said that SII has partnered with British pharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca to provide Covishield to low-and middle-income countries (GAVI countries). Both were identified by Oxford Vaccine as their candidates for the trials of the vaccine.

According to Mumbai Mirror, one billion doses are to be produced over the next one year out of which, 50 per cent will be distributed across India, while the remaining will go to the other GAVI countries.

Oxford Vaccine had declared the success of its phase 2 trials two weeks ago, Mumbai Mirrror reported.

In the interview, Poonawalla said that SII has invested around 200 million dollars and dedicated six machines in the Hadapsar plant for the manufacturing the vaccine.

Mumbai Mirror also reported Adar Poonawalla claiming that SII will be producing 60 to 70 million doses per month once it gets necessary regulatory approvals. He said that they are looking forward to producing 300 doses by the end of this year. Poonawalla also said that SII might announce the availability of its own vaccine by the end of 2021.

Last week, five sites were declared for the human trials. SII took a step forward on Friday when an expert advisory committee to Drug Controller General of India (DGCI) approved the revised protocols submitted by SII, Mumbai Mirror reported.

Read the complete report in Mumbai Mirror