The Pune-based Serum Institute of India, which has partnered with AstraZeneca for manufacturing the Oxford COVID-19 vaccine candidate, is also conducting Phase 2 and 3 human clinical trials of its candidate in India.
"We want to be ready in case everything goes perfectly but it's not my central expectation that we will be doing that this year, but the programme is progressing well", he told the BBC in relation to the reports of deliveries to London hospitals.
A third European Union official said this bold goal could be achieved if the European Union reached supply deals with at least seven vaccine candidates.
Under an interim license, medical and other key workers would also be able to receive the Oxford vaccine, said Prof Hill. Called AZD1222 or ChAdOx1 nCoV-19, the viral vector vaccine is made from a weakened version of a common cold virus that causes infections in chimpanzees.
There is still no effective Covid-19 vaccine, but the first shots could be available at the beginning of next year, the Commission said earlier in October.
The chimpanzee cold virus has been genetically changed to include the genetic sequence of the so-called spike protein the coronavirus uses to gain entry to human cells.
Flu Shot Fears Growing Further as Suspected Deaths Pile Up
Concerns over the vaccination program have grown following the recent deaths of at least 32 people who had previously been immunized.
"We do not know the efficacy at this point and that is why we are eagerly awaiting the phase-three trial results", she told Al Jazeera from Lucerne, Switzerland.
The company released similar results back in July, but for healthy adults between the ages of 18 and 55.
Executive Director Sai Prasad said, "If we get all the approvals in place, I think during Q2 of 2021, we should get the efficacy readout from our Phase III clinical trial - April, May, June, for example".
South Korea's drug safety agency said Tuesday that it is reviewing whether to grant fast-track approval of a vaccine candidate developed by British-Swedish bio giant AstraZeneca Plc. "Serum Institute of India is in the process of completing phase 2B and 3 trials but they also have phase 3 trials ongoing in Brazil, South Africa and the U.S.", the Indian Council of Medical Research DG said.
Wilder-Smith said there is a possibility that several vaccines could be rolled out simultaneously.
The two-dose vaccine, called BNT162b2, has been tested on 35,000 people so far, with nearly 40,000 people enrolled in the trials program to date.