Only a few days to go: We’re raising £25,000 to keep TheyWorkForYou running and make sure people across the UK can hold their elected representatives to account.

Donate to our crowdfunder

Support for Vaccine Manufacturing and Life Sciences Sector

Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy – in the House of Commons on 4th May 2020.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of Chris Green Chris Green Conservative, Bolton West

What steps his Department is taking to support (a) vaccine manufacturing and (b) the UK life sciences sector.

Photo of Alok Sharma Alok Sharma The Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy

I announced the new vaccines taskforce on 17 April, which will expedite efforts to research and produce a coronavirus vaccine. Last week, thanks to UK Government financial support of £20 million, the Oxford vaccine entered clinical trials in humans. I can update the House that as of today 601 people have taken part in that trial. We continue to talk to Oxford to understand its manufacturing needs, and colleagues will be aware it has announced a collaboration with AstraZeneca to ensure manufacturing capacity in the UK.

Photo of Chris Green Chris Green Conservative, Bolton West

British scientists are working with partners around the world to develop treatments and vaccines for covid-19. Does my right hon. Friend agree that it is just as important that we take the same collaborative approach to manufacturing to ensure that, wherever treatments are developed around the world, they are made available in Britain and to people right across the world as soon as possible?

Photo of Alok Sharma Alok Sharma The Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy

My hon. Friend raises an incredibly important point. We are absolutely committed to working with international partners in tackling the pandemic, ensuring the UK is contributing to, and indeed benefiting from, efforts around the globe. At the global coronavirus response summit, which the UK is co-hosting, my right hon. Friend the Prime Minister has today confirmed the £388 million from the UK towards the global £8 billion target for research and development into covid-19.