Producers are struggling for the global vaccine market worth $100 billion, Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Thursday.
Some producers compete unfairly, sell a small batch of vaccines at a lower price on the condition to be an exclusive supplier, Putin said, speaking at a video meeting on measures to boost investment activity in Moscow.
"We see how competitors behave in the global vaccine market worth $100 billion. They come, sell a small batch of their vaccine at a discount, on the condition that everything else will be purchased only from this producer," he said.
He also said the pandemic has greatly affected the global economy, which experienced its worst year in 2020 since World War II.
"The past year has been the most difficult for the global economy since the end of the Second World War. You are well aware of this yourself. According to estimates, the world's GDP for 2020 decreased by 3.5%," he said.
But Russia has already started recovering, the unemployment rate has been dropping, and the domestic demand is positive, he said.
Since first appearing in China's Wuhan last December, the novel coronavirus has spread to 192 countries and regions around the world, claiming over 2.62 million lives.