Skip to main content

Advertisement

Advertisement

Asia

North Korea rejects offer of nearly 3 million Sinovac COVID-19 shots

North Korea rejects offer of nearly 3 million Sinovac COVID-19 shots

FILE PHOTO: Vials of China's Sinovac COVID-19 vaccine are seen in the visual inspection unit of the Holding Company for Biological Products and Vaccines "Vacsera" in Cairo, Egypt August 31, 2021. REUTERS/Amr Abdallah Dalsh

North Korea has rejected roughly 3 million COVID-19 vaccine doses of China's Sinovac Biotech, saying they should be sent to severely affected countries, the UNICEF said on Wednesday (Sep 1).

The isolated country's public ministry pointed to the limited global supply for vaccines and continuing virus surges elsewhere, according to the UN children's agency that manages the supply for the COVAX scheme for lower-income nations.

So far, North Korea has not reported any COVID-19 cases and has imposed strict anti-virus measures, including border closures and domestic travel curbs.

A spokesperson for the UN agency told Reuters that the ministry will continue to communicate with COVAX facility to receive vaccines in the coming months.

In July, North Korea had rejected shipments of AstraZeneca's vaccine due to concerns over side effects, according to a South Korean think-tank, which is affiliated with South Korea's spy agency.

The Institute for National Security Strategy had then said that North Korea was not keen on Chinese vaccines due to concerns they may not be that effective, but it has shown interest in shots made in Russia.

Several countries such as Thailand and Uruguay have begun using other vaccines for those who received the Sinovac shot as their first dose in a bid to increase protection.

"We continue to work with DPRK authorities to help respond to the COVID-19 pandemic," a spokesperson for the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization alliance, one of the organizations that co-leads COVAX scheme, said. 

BOOKMARK THIS: Our comprehensive coverage of the COVID-19 pandemic and its developments

Download our app or subscribe to our Telegram channel for the latest updates on the coronavirus outbreak: https://cna.asia/telegram

 

Source: Reuters

Advertisement

Also worth reading

Advertisement