US Considers Donating More Covid-19 Vaccines to Vietnam, Says Ambassador
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|Ambassador Ha Kim Ngoc says the US is considering delivering additional Covid-19 vaccines to Vietnam through COVAX. (Photo: VOV)|
The United States is considering giving more coronavirus vaccines to Vietnam, Vietnam Ambassador to the United States Ha Kim Ngoc said on Sunday (July 25).
Ngoc told a Washington-based VOV correspondent that the second US-donated shipment of 3 million doses of the Moderna vaccine has arrived in Vietnam, with about 1.5 million doses transferred to Ho Chi Minh City on July 24 and the remainder expected to arrive in Hanoi the following day.
The US has supplied Vietnam with 5 million doses out of a total of 23 million doses that the Biden administration has committed to 20 countries and territories in Asia.
“As far as I know the US is considering donating additional vaccines to Vietnam in the coming time,” he revealed.
“This is timely and significant sharing and assistance for Vietnam,” said Ngoc, citing the fact that the US considers vaccines a matter of national security while many countries have a high demand for COVID-19 vaccines from the US, according to VOV.
|More than 4 million people have been vaccinated against COVID-19, or 5% of the needy population - a rather low rate compared to other countries in Southeast Asia. (Photo: VOV)|
The diplomat said the Vietnamese Embassy in the US has worked hard in recent times to seek and lobby for the supply of vaccines as well as medical equipment to the COVID-19 fight back in the country. He said the embassy has received strong support and close coordination from the American business community in Vietnam, as well as many Vietnamese individuals and organizations in the US.
“The US side is currently discussing with Vietnam to complete the procedure for shipping to the country Cue Covid-19 test kits and 75 cold storage devices for vaccines in the near future", the ambassador added.
Vietnam is also in talks with the United States on domestic production of mRNA vaccines, its foreign ministry said on Thursday, adding that production could begin in the fourth quarter or early in 2022. The ministry did not identify the US and Vietnamese companies involved in the talks.
Clinical trials could begin in Vietnam in August, the Tuoi Tre newspaper reported, adding that the firms could produce 100 million to 200 million doses a year under such a deal.
Approximately 10.2 million doses of Covid-19 vaccines have been delivered to Vietnam, of which 6.2 million doses have been distributed to localities for vaccinations. The vaccines were sourced from AstraZeneca and Pfizer under commercial contracts, and from COVAX, Japan, China, and Russia through sponsoring and donations. Vietnam is set to receive an additional 6.8 million doses from Pfizer, AstraZeneca, the United States, and the United Kingdom in July.
Vietnam kept the virus at bay for the first year of the pandemic but infections have been spreading quickly since late April. As of 6 pm on July 24, Vietnam has logged 87,192 new locally transmitted cases following the resurgence of the virus in late April and 90,903 cases since the onset of the first outbreak in January 2020. As many as 17,583 patients have recovered from the disease, including 2,047 cases announced on July 24.
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