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Tuesday, May 11, 2021

BioNTech CEO: Initial vaccine cost estimate was more than €50

BioNTech co-founder Uğur Şahin confirmed that the German company’s first price estimate for the mRNA vaccine was priced at €54 per dose.

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Şahin also said that the company offered the EU 500 million doses initially of the mRNA vaccine — a claim repeatedly denied by Commission officials.

In an interview on Saturday with Bild, Şahin said this was merely a first estimate made in mid-June: “At the time, we simply didn’t know how exactly the production could be scaled,” he said. It was unclear how much “the production processes and costs will be exactly.”

The initial cost estimate was first reported by the Süddeutsche Zeitung on Thursday.

Eventually, BioNTech and Pfizer figured out how reduce costs and build up their manufacturing scale, and made a new offer weeks later between €15 and €30 depending on the number of doses purchased.

The U.S. signed a deal for €19.50 per dose on July 22, after which “all industrialized countries then received this price model,” Şahin said.

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The EU ultimately signed a deal for approximately €15 per dose, according to three EU diplomats. EU countries paid €12 for their initial order of 300 million doses after the Commission gave the company a down payment, according to a leaked price list in December.

The company also confirmed to Bild that it would supply 28 million doses to the EU by the end of February, following reports that BioNTech/Pfizer was 10 million doses short.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by WCT staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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