US pharmaceutical giant Pfizer on Monday said it will supply vaccines only to central governments and supranational organisations for deployment in national immunisation programs. The statement comes hours after Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said that Pfizer and Moderna have declined to sell coronavirus vaccines to the city government as they want to directly deal with the Centre.
"Pfizer will supply COVID-19 vaccine only to central Govts & supra-national orgs for deployment in national immunization programs. Allocation of doses & implementation plan within a country is a decision for local governments based on relevant health authority guidance," the company said in a statement today.
The pharma giant further said that its discussions with the Government of India are ongoing and that they are "hopeful" to bring the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine for use in the country.
Earlier, a senior Punjab official said Moderna had refused to send vaccines directly to the state government stating that it only deals with the Centre.
Delhi is among other states that have floated a global tender to procure vaccines amid an acute shortage of doses in the country. The AAP government has set a target to inoculate two crore people of Delhi in the next three months, but several vaccination centres in the city have been closed due to the shortage of vaccines.
"Both the companies (Pfizer, Moderna) have refused to sell vaccines directly to us. They have said that they will deal with the Government of India alone," CM Kejriwal said and urged the Centre to procure vaccines soon and distribute them among the states. "I appeal to the Centre to import vaccines and distribute to the states," he added.