AstraZeneca vaccine doses in U.S. should go to hard-hit countries - business group

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A medical worker prepares a dose of Oxford/AstraZeneca's COVID-19 vaccine at a vaccination centre in Antwerp, Belgium March 18, 2021. REUTERS/Yves Herman

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WASHINGTON, April 23 (Reuters) - The U.S. Chamber of Commerce on Friday called on the Biden administration to release millions of doses of AstraZeneca (AZN.L) vaccine from storage for shipment to India, Brazil and other countries hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic.

"The vaccine doses will not be needed in the United States, where it's estimated that vaccine manufacturers will be able to produce enough doses by early June to vaccinate every American," Myron Brilliant, the chamber's vice president and head of international affairs, said in a statement.

Shipping stockpiled AstraZeneca vaccine doses to countries struggling with the coronavirus "would affirm U.S. leadership, including in COVAX" he said, referring to an international partnership to ensure broad access to vaccines. "No one is safe from the pandemic until we are all safe from it."

"The U.S. Chamber of Commerce strongly encourages the administration to release the millions of AstraZeneca vaccine doses in storage - as well as other life-support equipment - for shipment to India, Brazil and other nations hard hit by the pandemic," he said.

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Reporting by Jonathan Landay; Editing by Cynthia Osterman

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