Defense Production Act
The Biden Administration has strongly signaled its intent to invoke the Defense Production Act (“DPA”) in a variety of contexts imminently to bolster the country’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic, specifically with respect to the manufacture and distribution of COVID-19 vaccines, tests, therapies, and other essential supplies.
Indeed, on February 5, 2021, pursuant to the DPA, the Biden Administration expanded the priority rating of Pfizer’s vaccine production contract to ensure the company has first access to the filling pumps and tangential flow filtration skid units it needs to produce its COVID-19 vaccine. The administration also indicated plans to exercise its DPA authorities to boost domestic manufacture of surgical gloves and at-home COVID-19 tests by investing in raw materials, additional production lines, and new manufacturing plants. See King & Spalding blog post, “White House COVID-19 Response Team Discusses Use of DPA” (February 5, 2021).
If invoked in other contexts, which is very likely, the DPA will significantly impact life science companies and others directly involved in the manufacture and distribution of COVID-19 vaccines, tests, therapies, and other essential supplies, as well as a wide range of other companies who buy and supply the components of such supplies for non-COVID-19-related purposes.
Biden administration plans to undertake three actions under the DPARead More