WASHINGTON: The US government has reached a deal for the purchase of 100 million doses of vaccine as the country's COVID-19 cases have kept soaring and reached 4,620,419 as of Saturday evening.
The Trump administration said on Friday it has reached an agreement with French drug maker Sanofi and British pharmaceutical giant GlaxoSmithKline on the purchase of 100 million doses of an experimental coronavirus vaccine, according to media reports.
The deal was made under the administration's Operation Warp Speed, which aims to accelerate the development process of COVID-19 vaccines.
Earlier, an anonymous U.S. security official alleged that Chinese government-linked hackers targeted U.S.-based biotech company Moderna to steal data of vaccine development, according to a Reuters report.
At a House subcommittee hearing on Friday, U.S. top infectious disease expert Anthony Fauci said "No. I don't think so" when asked "do you believe China is still a threat today to the U.S. vaccine research?"
"What we do is really transparent. We publish it. We announce it," said Fauci.
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin refuted the baseless accusation on Friday, saying "such allegations are pure slander. The international community can see through such vilifying ploys."
"China is leading the world in COVID-19 vaccine research and development. We don't need to get ahead by theft and we have never done that," said Wang.