Sahin said this winter would still be hard as the vaccine would not have a big impact on infection numbers
BioNTech co-founder and CEO Ugur Sahin said that the impact of a new Covid vaccine will be effective significantly over summer and life should be back to normal by next winter.
Sahin said this winter would still be hard as the vaccine would not have a big impact on infection numbers, reports the BBC.
BioNTech and co-developers Pfizer last week said preliminary analysis showed their vaccine could prevent more than 90% of people from getting Covid-19; about 43,000 people took part in tests.
Sahin said in an interview that he was confident the vaccine would reduce transmission between people as well as stop symptoms developing in someone who has had the vaccine.
It was possible, he said, the vaccine could halve transmission which would have a big impact.
"I am very confident that transmission between people will be reduced by such a highly effective vaccine - maybe not 90% but maybe 50% - but we should not forget that even that could result in a dramatic reduction of the pandemic spread," he added.
He hopes that if everything continued to go well, the vaccine would begin to be delivered at the "end of this year, beginning of next year".
The goal was to deliver more than 300 million doses worldwide by next April, he said, which "could allow us to only start to make an impact".
Ugur Sahin said the bigger impact would happen later and added: "Summer will help us because the infection rate will go down in the summer and what is absolutely essential is that we get a high vaccination rate until or before autumn/winter next year."
Sahin added it was essential that all immunisation programmes were completed before next autumn.