AstraZeneca to produce Covid-19 vaccines in Japan: NHK

AstraZeneca applied to Japan's health ministry for vaccine approval earlier this month.
AstraZeneca applied to Japan's health ministry for vaccine approval earlier this month.PHOTO: AFP

TOKYO (BLOOMBERG) - AstraZeneca plans to produce Covid-19 vaccines in Japan and will begin local distribution as soon as it receives government approval, national broadcaster NHK reported, citing an interview with an official at the drugmaker's Japan unit.

The Japanese government signed a contract with the company to procure enough vaccines for 60 million people, NHK said.

AstraZeneca applied to the Health Ministry for vaccine approval earlier this month, the Nikkei reported.

The company's Japan unit plans to produce vaccines for more than 40 million people through its partner JCR Pharmaceuticals in Hyogo prefecture, NHK reported.

Japan launched its coronavirus vaccination programme on Wednesday (Feb 17), five months ahead of the Tokyo Olympics.