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Thailand Approves Sinovac Vaccine Ahead of National Rollout

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Thailand Approves Sinovac Vaccine Ahead of National Rollout

The Sinovac Covid-19 vaccine.
The Sinovac Covid-19 vaccine. Photographer: Dimas Ardian/Bloomberg
The Sinovac Covid-19 vaccine.
Photographer: Dimas Ardian/Bloomberg

Thailand’s Food and Drug Administration has approved Sinovac Biotech Ltd.’s Covid-19 vaccine for local emergency use ahead of the launch of a national inoculation program.

Thai FDA Secretary-General Paisarn Dunkum signed the emergency use approval on Monday ahead of the arrival of the first batch of 2 million doses of Sinovac shots ordered by Thailand on Wednesday. The authorization for Sinovac’s jabs is valid for one year, according to the approval letter by the drug regulator.

Read: More Than 209 Million Shots Given: Covid-19 Vaccine Tracker

Thailand, which aims to inoculate 50% of its population by the end of this year, has already approved AstraZeneca Plc’s Covid-19 vaccine for emergency use. The Southeast Asian nation has ordered 61 million doses of AstraZeneca vaccine, some of which will be produced locally by Siam Bioscience Ltd. through technology transfer.

Deputy Premier and Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul said the country will also receive 117,000 doses of AstraZeneca vaccine on Wednesday, and that Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-Ocha is expected to be the first person in Thailand to be vaccinated.

(Updates with details on AstraZeneca vaccine in final paragraph.)