Argentina restarts talks with Pfizer into buying its coronavirus vaccine

FILE PHOTO: A vial of the Pfizer-BioNTech coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccine is seen on a table at Ankara City Hospital in Ankara

BUENOS AIRES (Reuters) – Argentina has resumed talks with Pfizer Inc to purchase vaccines against the coronavirus, an adviser to the government said on Tuesday, as the country registers a spike in new infections.

The government had talked with Pfizer last year about the purchase of COVID-19 vaccines but the two sides did not reach a deal on supply of the vaccine it developed with German partner BioNTech SE.

“Negotiations with Pfizer have resumed,” presidential adviser Cecilia Nicolini told local Futurock radio.

The South American country with a population of about 45 million is going through its second wave of coronavirus infections and has had more than 60,000 COVID-19 deaths so far.

Argentina is distributing Russia’s Sputnik V vaccine as well as doses from China’s Sinopharm, the Serum Institute of India, and the UN-led COVAX program.

President Alberto Fernandez intensified restrictions in the middle of the month to try to contain the infection rate.

Nicolini also said that Argentina is in dialogue with the Cuban government about the possibility of conducting clinical trials or producing a Cuban vaccine in the country.

(Reporting by Maximilian Heath, Writing by Hugh Bronstein; Editing by Bill Berkrot)

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