BioNTech boss strikes upbeat note on Europe’s vaccine drive

BERLIN (AP) — The head of German pharmaceutical company BioNTech says more than half of Europe’s population should have received the coronavirus vaccine in the next two months, allowing lockdown rules to be eased. BioNTech and U.S. partner Pfizer developed the first widely approved COVID-19 vaccine and aim to produce 3 billion doses this year. Its chief executive said Wednesday he’s confident the vaccine works against variants but will adapt the shot if necessary. BioNTech is investigating reports of heart inflammation cases in a small number of people who received the vaccine in Israel, but hasn’t seen data indicating a heightened risk yet. The company expects to get its vaccine approved in China in July and is considering possible production sites in Asia, Africa and South America.