Maldives received 5,000 doses of China's Sinopharm vaccine, says HEOC

The Health Emergency Operations Centre (HEOC) has stated that the Maldives has received 5,000 doses of a COVID-19 vaccine manufactured in China.

According to HEOC, the vaccines in Maldives were developed by China’s National Pharmaceutical Group, Sinopharm. HEOC’s Spokesperson, Dr. Nazla Rafeeq said the vaccines were donated by a well wisher, but did not disclose the identity of the donor. However, she clarified that the vaccines were not gifted by the Chinese government.

Dr. Nazla said the vaccines are currently in storage, and that it will only be administered after the Maldives Food and Drug Authority (MFDA) issues the necessary approvals for the vaccine. More details regarding the vaccine will be shared at a later time, she added.

China’s vaccine has already been administered to millions of Chinese citizens. Some other countries are also using the vaccine, and are procuring millions of doses of the vaccine from China.

The Maldives initiated its national COVID-19 vaccine drive on Monday. Currently, only the COVISHIELD vaccine manufactured in India under a special license from AstraZeneca is being administered in the Maldives. However, Health Minister Ahmed Naseem has stated that more varieties of the COVID-19 vaccine will be available in the Maldives in the future.