The United States plans to send roughly 4 million doses of AstraZeneca’s COVID-19 vaccine that it is not using to Mexico and Canada in loan deals with the two countries, yielding to requests to share vaccines with allies, a U.S. official said on Friday.
“We’re able to announce that we’re lending a portion of our releasable AstraZeneca vaccines to Mexico and to Canada,” White House COVID-19 Response Coordinator Jeff Zients said.
The Biden administration has come under pressure from countries around the world to share vaccines, particularly its stock of AstraZeneca’s vaccine, which is authorized for use elsewhere but not yet in the United States.
AstraZeneca has millions of doses made in a U.S. facility, and has said that it would have 30 million shots ready at the beginning of April.
The country is getting prepared to roll out the AstraZeneca vaccine domestically if it gets authorization from the Food and Drug Administration, the White House said.
The United States does not need the AstraZeneca shots to meet its target of having enough doses for all U.S. adults by the end of May.
The three authorized vaccine makers—Pfizer/BioNTech SE, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson—have promised to deliver nearly 500 million doses to the United States by then.