Maldives to procure COVID-19 vaccines from India

The Maldives will be purchasing COVID-19 vaccines from Serum Institute of India Limited and Institute of Life Sciences Private Limited, the Finance Ministry has announced.

In a declaration signed and issued by Finance Minister Ibrahim Ameer, the government confirmed that the Maldives will be signing agreements with the two Indian companies to procure COVID-19 vaccines from India after suspending certain provisions of the Public Finance Act.

While the vaccines are available for procurement from specific parties only, the vaccines are being released globally under special procurement policies, said the declaration. The relevant authorities have advised that the signing of the agreement is necessary at this time, it said.

Therefore, four provisions of the Public Finance Act will be temporarily suspended under the power vested in the minister under the Public Finance Act. The suspended provisions are those on tender process, awarding of contract, advance payment of 15%, and compensation in case of delays. The suspensions will be applicable only on the agreement which will be signed with the two companies for the procurement of the vaccine and for the duration of the agreement. The Finance Ministry will be conducting an internal audit on the government’s spending under the agreement.

The government signed a similar agreement with Singapore’s AstraZeneca Company to purchase 700,000 doses of the vaccine earlier on December 31st.