Pakistan approves AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine for emergency use

Pakistan has become the latest country to approve the COVID-19 vaccine jointly developed by British-Swedish pharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca and Oxford University.

“Drug Regulatory Authority of Pakistan (DRAP) granted emergency use authorization to AstraZeneca’s COVID vaccine,” Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on National Health Services, Dr Faisal Sultan told Reuters.

Pakistan earlier announced to buy 1.2 million COVID-19 vaccine doses from China’s Sinopharm. “The Cabinet Committee has decided to initially purchase 1.2 million doses of the vaccine from the Chinese company Sinopharm, which will be provided free of cost to frontline workers in the first quarter of 2021,” Pakistani Minister for Science and Technology Chaudhry Fawad Hussain said on Twitter.

Pakistan has approved $250 million in funding to buy COVID-19 vaccines, initially to cover the most vulnerable population.

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