The deals signed between health secretary Alan Johnson, GlaxoSmithKline, and Baxter will enable production of pre-pandemic vaccine to begin as soon as possible.
The agreements could provide enough vaccine to protect the most vulnerable people in the population before a pandemic arrives, without affecting supplies of seasonal flu vaccine.
Mr Johnson said: 'Scientists tell us that as yet we don't know enough about this novel strain, or whether it's likely to mutate, but that this virus has the potential to become a pandemic and we can't predict how serious that would be.
'We have an opportunity to secure vaccine in advance of a pandemic wave. We have advance purchase agreements to provide vaccine for the entire UK population which will take effect when Phase 6 pandemic is declared. It will then take over a year for all the vaccine necessary to be provided.’
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