The production of anti-Covid 19 vaccines is slowed down by a lack of equipment, in particular vials and staff to ensure their manufacture, the French Minister of Industry explained on Wednesday, hoping for an acceleration of partnerships between pharmaceutical groups.
The blocking point, today, is the bottlenecks in terms of supply of tanks, supply of caps, supply of bottles, supply of capsules
", listed Agnès Pannier-Runacher, during a hearing at the National Assembly.
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Along with material issues, there are "
bottlenecks in terms of the availability of experts who are able to deploy these production chains
", continued the Minister for Industry.
Three vaccines are currently approved in the European Union: Pfizer / BioNTech, Moderna and AstraZeneca.
A fourth, that of Johnson & Johnson, could be within a big week.
Johnson & Johnson are telling us themselves that they can't do more today because they don't have the human resources to do it,
" the minister said.
To increase production capacities, she considered it important that large laboratories, usually competitors, join forces to carry out different stages of vaccine manufacturing.
As such, she praised the projects of French Sanofi, behind on its own vaccine project but which will help from the summer to bottling those of Pfizer / BioNTech and Johnson & Johnson.
Sanofi is doing an exploit which a priori is not taken up by all the other laboratories today, since it is the only laboratory which will produce three different vaccines
", she judged, also integrating the own project of Sanofi.
Other large groups have nevertheless signed similar partnerships, such as the Swiss company Novartis, which will also produce the Pfizer / BioNTech vaccine.
Across the Atlantic, Merck announced this week that it will help Johnson & Johnson.
We can (...) expect to have other agreements between laboratories
", concluded Agnès Pannier-Runacher.