The drugmaker will supply the extra doses from as early as the beginning of 2022, it said in a statement. That adds to an earlier agreement for Takeda to bring in 50 million doses of the vaccine, which has been primarily used in mass vaccination sites and workplace inoculations in Japan.
Takeda CEO Christophe Weber had said in May that talks were underway to potentially double the Moderna shipments to help Japan speed up its inoculation efforts. The company has handled domestic testing, regulatory filing, and importation of the vaccine. read more
The bulk of the first 50 million doses were expected by June, but global demand has slowed that schedule. As a result, Japan's government has had to halt new applications of companies wanting to set up workplace vaccine centres. read more
Japan has been dependent on imported vaccines for its inoculation programme, which still trails those of most major economies. The government aims to complete the vaccination of its vulnerable elderly population this month and expand it to all adults by November.
The new deal would not help immediately with that push. But it would potentially provide supplies for booster injections or shots developed by Moderna against COVID-19 variants, Takeda said.
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