US president Donald Trump has allayed fears that a vaccine to deal with Covid-19 could be made mandatory.

Speaking after the launch of “Operation Warp Speed” on Friday, which aims to fast-track the development of a coronavirus vaccine, President Trump said that any new vaccine would only be for those “who want to get it”.

“Not everyone is going to want to get it,” he said.

The president called his plan a new “Manhattan Project”, promising full collaboration with “the best of American industry and innovation, the full resources of the United States government, and the excellence and precision of the United States military.”

“Its objective is to finish developing and then to manufacture and distribute a proven coronavirus vaccine as fast as possible,” he said. “In addition, it will continue accelerating the development of diagnostics and breakthrough therapies.”

The US government will manufacture potential vaccines before they meet regulatory approvals, distributing the vaccine that is eventually approved.

“This will eliminate any unnecessary delay and enable us to begin providing Americans with a proven vaccine the day our scientists say, ‘We’re ready, we got it.’,” he claimed.

Fears had grown about the possibility of mandatory vaccinations in the US when the president previously said he would mobilize the military to deploy the vaccine, but the latest news will ease concerns among those with ethical and constitutional objections.