The Donald Trump administration offered “large sums of money” to get exclusive access to a coronavirus vaccine being developed by a German company, Die Welt reported Sunday.
According to the article, the Trump administration was offering large sums of money to convince the company to move its research wing to the U.S. and develop the vaccine for the U.S. only.
A spokesperson for the German Health Ministry acknowledged the approach and said that the firm was also interested in developing the vaccine in Germany and Europe.
On Sunday afternoon, Germany’s Health Ministry told Reuters that its spokesperson had been quoted correctly in the newspaper article, confirming that Washington had attempted to take over the biopharmaceutical company. Government sources indicated that Berlin was now offering CureVac financial incentives to remain in Germany.
The U.S. Ambassador to Germany, Richard Grenell, said the report was wrong.
CureVac CEO Daniel Menichella had revealed to U.S. officials that they had hope for experimental vaccines in development to be released in early summer.
German politicians have expressed anger and have demanded that Berlin prevent the U.S. from controlling access to an eventual coronavirus vaccine.
“The American regime has committed an extremely unfriendly act,” said Social Democrat MP Karl Lauterbach, who said that German health workers on the front lines — as well as people around the world — needed to have access to something developed in Germany, and that no country should be able to purchase exclusive access to the vaccine.
“Capitalism has limits,” he said.
See this in Politico.