Egypt authorises China’s coronavirus vaccine for emergency use

Egypt has authorised the coronavirus vaccine developed by China’s state-run drugmaker Sinopharm for emergency use, its health minister Hala Zayed said on Saturday.

Zayed told a local TV show that the Egyptian Drug Authority (EDA) would send on Sunday the ministry the official licence, which it has already issued on Saturday.

On December 10, Egypt received the first batch of Sinopharm vaccines.

Zayed said the batch underwent four tests conducted by the EDA and they all proved the safety of the vaccine.

Egypt will receive the second batch of the Chinese vaccine within days, which are expected to be provided to citizens later in January, the minister added.

On Thursday, China and Egypt had signed a letter of intent for mutual cooperation on COVID-19 vaccines. Aside from Zayed, the signing ceremony was attended by Chinese Ambassador to Egypt Liao Liqiang and Mohamed Hassani, Egyptian Assistant Minister of Health for Public Health Initiatives.

Egypt China covid vaccine
Chinese Ambassador to Egypt Liao Liqiang (L), Egyptian Health Minister Hala Zayed (C) and Egyptian Assistant Minister of Health for Public Health Initiatives Mohamed Hassani (R) attend the signing ceremony of a letter of intent in Cairo, Egypt, on Thursday, December 31, 2020. (Photo Credit: Xinhua)

Liao said the Chinese government attaches great importance to the safety and effectiveness of the vaccine, adding that the letter of intent would strongly promote cooperation on research, development, production, and use of coronavirus vaccines between the two countries’ relevant institutions.

“Chinese vaccines are undergoing phase III clinical trials in many countries, and they are progressing smoothly. China has approved the emergency use of the vaccines in the country, and there have been no serious adverse reactions,” Liao stated.

The Chinese ambassador said everyone has the right to obtain vaccines and medicines, and China is committed to supplying the vaccines as global public goods and at fair and reasonable prices, thereby doing its part in ensuring the availability and affordability of the vaccines in developing countries.

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