New analysis has found the public sector has invested at least €93 billion to COVID-19 vaccines and therapeutics in 2020.
The analysis conducted by the kENUP Foundation found more than 95%, about €88.3 billion, was spent on vaccine companies. Only 5% of public COVID-19 funds were spent on therapeutics.
Most of the funds, around €86.5 billion, were used to conclude advance market commitments (AMCs). In return for the right to buy a specified number of vaccine doses in a given timeframe, governments finance part of the upfront costs faced by vaccines producers in the form of AMCs. Just 7% of funds were spent through preferred loans or conventional grants.
The data also showed the origin of the funding: 32% of funds directed towards vaccine producers come from the US, 24% from the EU, and a total of 13% from the governments of Japan and South Korea.
For vaccines, exceptionally, governments invested 71% or at least €63.1 billion into Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) and MidCaps. Only 18% of funds went to big pharma, underlining the importance of SMEs in driving innovation.
Holm Keller, Chairman of kENUP Foundation said: “Public investments have been instrumental in supporting innovation in the fight against the coronavirus. To bridge the time until broad rollout of vaccines, further investment in therapeutics is especially important. In parallel, a dedicated public pandemic preparedness scheme that would make vaccines and therapeutics readily available at lower development costs for any kind of pandemic pathogen is needed”.