New Delhi: India may grant Pune’s Serum Institute of India (SII) with the emergency use authorisation of Oxford and AstraZeneca’s coronavirus vaccine if the British-Swedish pharmaceutical company gets such an approval from the UK government, Niti Aayog member Vinod Paul noted on Saturday. Also Read - Coronavirus: Devotees Won’t be Allowed Holy Dip in Ganga River in Uttarakhand on Kartik Purnima

The Oxford vaccine is already in its third and final phase of clinical trials in India, and if all things go as planned, the COVID-19 vaccine may be ready for distribution by January or February 2021. Also Read - COVID-19: European Union Says First Virus Vaccinations Possible By Christmas

“We expect emergency authorisation for the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine to be sought in the UK. If so, it will give an opportunity for the Indian regulator also,” Paul said, as quoted by Business Today. Also Read - Punjab Imposes Night Curfew From December 1, Doubles Fine For Flouting COVID-19 Norms

An emergency authorisation of the coronavirus vaccine would ensure its proper administration based on the priority list, starting with frontline workers, senior citizens, people with comorbidities and so on.

Earlier this week, the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine produced a strong immune response in older adults, raising hopes that it can protect the age groups most at risk from the virus.

Three coronavirus vaccines – Pfizer-BioNTech, Sputnik and Moderna — have already reported good preliminary data from phase three trials, with all suggesting 90 per cent of over-65s could be protected from Covid-19.

Meanwhile, Moderna has said that it will charge governments between $25 and $37 (Rs 1854 to Rs 2744) for a single dose of its vaccine candidate. The charges will further vary depending upon the amount ordered by a government.