ISLAMABAD: Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi on Thursday announced that China will provide five million Chinese vaccine shots of coronavirus by January 31 to Pakistan as Islamabad has approved emergency use of the Chinese vaccine SinoPharm.
Qureshi further said all-weather friend China has asked Pakistan to send an airplane for airlifting the half a million doses of the coronavirus vaccine.
In a tweet after a phone call with his Chinese counterpart Wang Yi, Qureshi said China offered Islamabad to send an airplane and airlift the vaccines. “Always great to speak to my friend, His Excellency FM Wang Yi.
With encouraging results of Chinese vaccine and our historic relationship, Pakistan has approved the emergency use authorisation of SinoPharm vaccine.
Indeed Pakistan greatly appreciates the 500,000 doses of the vaccine gifted by China,” Qureshi said. The Foreign Minister said, “China has played an instrumental role in Pakistan’s fight against COVID-19 with technical assistance and medical expertise.”
Talking to media persons in Islamabad, Qureshi said he informed his Chinese counterpart that Pakistan’s requirement for vaccines is more than this, and that it will need 1.1 million doses in the near future.
The Chinese side has also promised to provide the additional demands of 1.1 million vaccine shots by February-end.
“The Chinese Foreign Minister said when China had decided to work for the global public good in the context of Covid-19, the first country they thought to assist was Pakistan keeping in view the all-weather strategic relationship between both the countries,” Qureshi said.
The Foreign Minister quoting Chinese Foreign Minister Wang said, “China wants to assure Pakistan that our cooperation with you will continue.”
Both the foreign ministers also discussed the Chinese firm CanSino’s vaccine trials of which in Pakistan were successfully moving forward and their results had been quite encouraging.
Earlier, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Spokesperson in his weekly media briefing said the government of Pakistan set up a special committee of cabinet for the purchase of coronavirus vaccine.
Separately, Balochistan Parliamentary Secretary Health Dr Rubaba Khan Buledi said two companies have been allowed to supply Covid-19 vaccine in Pakistan. “Children will not be vaccinated against Covid-10,” she further said.
Dr Rababa directed Balochistan Health Department officials to finalize the cold chain strategy for delivery of coronavirus vaccine inside Balochistan and keeping the vaccine doses at a specific temperature.