Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla speaks during the China Development Forum in Beijing on March 25, 2023.

Lintao Zhang | Getty Images News | Getty Images

BEIJING — U.S. pharma giant Pfizer has signed an agreement with China to cooperate on improving the country’s health coverage, according to the company.

“We are aligned very much with the China ‘Healthy 2030’ [initiative] and we are trying to contribute as much as we can,” Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla told CNBC’s Eunice Yoon on Saturday.

He declined to share further details, including dollar amounts.

China in 2016 announced a “Healthy China 2030” plan for improving the country’s public health services, medical industry and food and drug safety. The Covid-19 pandemic also highlighted shortfalls in China’s still-developing public health system.

Pfizer’s memorandum of understanding with the Health China Research Center is set to support public health research and improve the health of rural populations, according to details released by Chinese state media.

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“Any individuals and citizens from China would have the same access to our innovative product,” Pfizer China President Jean-Christophe Pointeau said in the report.

He said the company has around 600 staff dedicated to rural areas “to educate the health care professionals on our breakthrough innovation Oncology, Anti-infectives and Inflammation & Immunology.”

The weekend comments did not discuss the Paxlovid drug for treating Covid.

In January, Bourla said Pfizer had signed an agreement with a local partner to manufacture Paxlovid in China, which production could begin in as soon as three or four months.

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