Pfizer Chief Executive Albert Bourla on Tuesday expressed optimism over the possibility of providing a coronavirus vaccine in 2020 as it signalled key data on the vaccine would not be released before the US election.

“If all goes well, we will be ready to distribute an initial number of doses,” said Bourla, informing about the ongoing clinical testing procedures.

The pharma giant could supply nearly 40 million doses in the United States this year if regulators approve a vaccine, he further informed.

Also read: Pfizer reports lower earnings as Covid-19 hits revenues

He said the company expects to file for emergency use authorisation for its COVID-19 vaccine in the third week of November.

Pfizer reported a 71% drop in profit to $2.2 billion in the latest quarter. However, the comparable period last year included a large gain connected to a transaction.

The company saw an 11% drop in its hospital business in emerging markets, primarily due to fewer elective surgeries in China and shorter in-patient hospital stays in the country.

Pfizer also cited strong performance in its biopharma business due to good sales for cancer drug Ibrance, anticoagulant Eliquis and other medications.