(Adds details of announcement, background)
OTTAWA, Sept 25 (Reuters) - Canada has signed a deal with
Cambridge-based AstraZeneca PLC to buy up to 20 million
doses of its COVID-19 vaccine candidate, Prime Minister Justin
Trudeau said on Friday.
Trudeau also told a news conference that Ottawa would invest
C$440 million ($328 million) in the COVID-19 vaccine Global
Access Facility, a global procurement mechanism designed to help
deliver fair, equitable and timely access to vaccines.
Canada has already struck agreements for a total of around
300 million doses of vaccine candidates from Pfizer Inc,
Novavax Inc, Sanofi, GlaxoSmithKline Plc
, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson.
The AstraZeneca medication is among the leading candidates
in the global race for a vaccine, now in late-stage trials in
Britain, South Africa and elsewhere.
Trials were halted in early September after one participant
developed a serious illness. The U.S. trial remains paused, but
others have resumed.
($1=1.3415 Canadian dollars)
(Reporting by David Ljunggren; Editing by Aurora Ellis)