- Pharmaceutical companies Johnson & Johnson and Aspen have signed a deal that will see Aspen manufacturing vaccines locally
- The US-based pharmaceutical firm has given Aspen its intellectual property and will also provide the materials needed to produce the jabs
- South Africans think the new deal is merely a money-making scheme and people will be forced to get vaccinated
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JOHANNESBURG - In a historic move, South African pharmaceutical company Aspen is set to manufacture 1.3 billion coronavirus vaccines for the African continent.
This comes after an agreement was reached with Johnson & Johnson that will allow Aspen to produce the J&J jabs using materials supplied by the US pharmaceutical giant.
Johnson & Johnson has granted Aspen an intellectual property licence that will allow Aspen to produce its own branded vaccine that will be called Aspenovax, according to a report by News24.
Over 50s stand a chance to win R100k if they get vaccinated before Christmas, guaranteed R200 grocery vouchers
Subject to the conclusion of a formal agreement between the companies, the transfer of rights and supply of drug substances will last until December 2026.
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"It [has] really given us the confidence to boost our capacity from 300 to over 400 next year. By end of next year we get to 700 million. It's still short of our aspiration target of 1.3 billion,” said Saad.
Under the agreement, Aspen is also given the licence to produce new vaccines that J&J produces.
South Africans think the Aspen/J&J deal is about money
Briefly News put together some thoughts from South Africans regarding the deal between Aspen and J&J, here's what they had to say:
"Aspen hit a jackpot with these #vaccines. There's money to be made for those who are awake, the share is 80% up."
"China is donating a billion vaccines to Africa... Looks like we going to need a lot more variants to accommodate for also these vaccines."
"And make some serious cash in the process whilst forcing governments to force citizens to accept no culpability should something go wrong."
"Aspenovax from another USA company this means more profits for US-based Pharmaceutical companies."
"Aspen and their doctors including our President must hold a press conference and clarify the Vaccine confusion."
"Money-making schemes to poor African people... They want to have a share... Since they saw that people are making money in Africa... Why would they be so keen on having their name on it? If they don't want to make money?"
Omicron: Ramaphosa accuses African countries of acting like colonisers over travel ban
Briefly News previously reported that President Cyril Ramaphosa is currently on a state visit to Nigeria. Speaking to reporters there, he likened the African countries that have placed travel bans on South Africa to colonisers.
Egypt, Mauritius, Rwanda and Seychelles have implemented travel bans against South Africa, as well as neighbouring southern African countries. These travel restrictions were instituted in response to the new Omicron variant of Covid-19.
Ramaphosa's trip will continue next week to Senegal and Ghana, where he will promote free trade and African unity, EWN reports.
Source: Briefly News