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7 Oct, 2020 17:59

Russia's 'Sputnik V' Covid-19 vaccine will cost $13 a pop, officials hope price will quickly go down once production accelerates

Russia's 'Sputnik V' Covid-19 vaccine will cost $13 a pop, officials hope price will quickly go down once production accelerates

Russia’s Covid-19 vaccine, the first in the world, will cost less than 1,000 rubles, or $13, per dose, says the Federal Antimonopoly Service (FAS). Despite a low price by Western standards, FAS believes the current price is steep.

“We understand that the price is quite high,” said Igor Artemyev, the head of FAS. “[The vaccine is] produced in relatively small batches, and they need capital to expand production.”

According to Artemyev, the cost of a dose will reduce as production increases and the vaccine becomes more readily available. The country will also revisit the price when other countries produce their own versions of a Covid-19 vaccine.

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In August, US-based biotech company Moderna Inc indicated that its vaccine would be priced at between $32 to $37 per dose, with Pfizer pricing its formula at around $20.

The announcement of a maximum price comes after Russian Health Minister Mikhail Murashko announced that the world's first Covid-19 vaccine could be placed on the market by the end of October. On Tuesday, President Vladimir Putin said that Russia needs to produce a million doses of Sputnik V, and improve its industrial capacity to more efficiently make the vaccine at a high volume.

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On August 11, Putin announced that the country had registered the world’s first Covid-19 vaccine, named Sputnik V. It is currently in its third and final stage of clinical trials, including 40,000 volunteers. As well as Sputnik V, there are other Covid-19 vaccines being trialed in Russia. The second, produced by the Siberian-based Vector lab, is due to be registered by mid-October, and the price limit of 1,000 rubles, or about $13 per dose, will also apply.

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