Vietnam’s Health Ministry on July 9 granted a license to import 5 million doses of Chinese vaccines for epidemic prevention and control in Ho Chi Minh City, which is conducting thorough social distancing for at least 2 weeks. because COVID-19 infections continue to increase.
Thanh Nien and Tuoi Tre newspapers said that the decision to allow the above-mentioned import was granted by the Drug Administration of Vietnam under the Health Ministry to Saigon Pharmaceutical Company Limited to import a batch of vaccine named Vero-Cell produced by China’s Sinopharm.
The Drug Administration of Vietnam was quoted by Thanh Nien and Tuoi Tre as saying that the batch of vaccines imported from China was “used for urgent needs in the prevention and control of the COVID-19 epidemic“.
Saigon Pharmaceutical Company is responsible for the “origin and quality of imported vaccines; ensure the preservation of vaccines at storage facilities in accordance with regulations” and also “ensure the use of vaccines for vaccination needs under the direction of the People’s Committee of Ho Chi Minh City,” according to the state-controlled media.
News that the import order is dated July 1 and is valid for one year. However, the two newspapers did not say when the vaccines will actually be delivered to the importing company.
The import of Chinese vaccines in large quantities coincides with the time when Ho Chi Minh City is the epicenter of Vietnam’s pandemic, with the number of positive COVID-19 cases continuously being detected at the highest level in the country, up to a hundred cases per day.
The latest news released by the official Facebook page of the Vietnamese government on the evening of July 9 said that there were 2 more deaths from the epidemic in HCM City, plus 3 deaths in Dong Thap province, raising the total number of deaths from the pandemic in Vietnam increased to 110.
Due to the epidemic, the city, which is considered the economic locomotive of Vietnam, with an estimated population of about 13 million people, began to apply a thorough social distancing order lasting 15 days, starting on July 9th. The Government Information page said that as of 10 am on the same day, Ho Chi Minh City had a total of 1,280 blockade points.
A day before the decision to import Chinese vaccines for Ho Chi Minh City, the Government Information page said that the Prime Minister of Vietnam “will continue to stand by Ho Chi Minh City every day, giving all the best for the city to deal with the pandemic.”
Still, the central government’s Facebook page quoted the Ministry of Health as saying that in July “there will be 8.7 million doses of vaccine to Vietnam and priority will be given to Ho Chi Minh City and neighboring provinces with pandemics.”
As VOA reported, while there are Vietnamese people who do not hesitate to buy Chinese vaccines, many others are suspicious, do not trust, do not want to inject China-made vaccines.
On the international level, over the past time, China’s COVID-19 vaccines have suffered a lot of unfavorable information in the press.
Most recently, on July 7, Reuters reported that in the same Southeast Asia region as Vietnam, Singapore does not include its citizens who have been vaccinated with China’s Sinovac Biotech vaccine in the list of people who have been vaccinated, with the reason is the lack of data on the effectiveness of the Chinese vaccine.
Still, Reuters quoted the press of another Southeast Asian country, Indonesia, said that the female scientist leading the trials of China’s Sinovac vaccine in Indonesia, Ms. Novilia Sjafri Bachtiar, died on July 7 due to suspected COVID-19 infection. 19. Currently, the number of deaths from the epidemic has reached a record in Indonesia, one of the countries where the Sinovac vaccine is most widely used.
A CNBC report published on July 7 said that of the six countries that have widely vaccinated but still have high numbers of infections, five of them rely on Chinese vaccines, that is the United Arab Emirates, Seychelles Islands, Mongolia, Uruguay, and Chile. In these countries, at least 60% of the population has received one dose.
Mongolia, the United Arab Emirates, and Seychelles use the majority of vaccines, which are Sinopharm. Chile and Uruguay mainly injected Sinovac, CNBC said.