Covid-19

Chinese vaccine maker doubles annual production to 2 billion doses

A health worker holds a syringe and a vial of the Sinovac Covid-19 vaccine in Bangkok, Thailand.
A health worker holds a syringe and a vial of the Sinovac Covid-19 vaccine in Bangkok, Thailand. REUTERS - ATHIT PERAWONGMETHA

Chinese biopharmaceutical firm Sinovac said it has doubled the annual production capacity of its Covid-19 vaccine called CoronaVac to two billion doses. 

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According to the company, this was made possible due to the completion of its third production line which was put to use for commercial production.

CoronaVac is one of four domestic vaccines given conditional approval by Chinese authorities. It has also been authorised by domestic regulators in countries such as Chile, Brazil and Turkey while others nations, including Ukraine and Uruguay, have pre-ordered doses.

On Wednesday, experts from the World Health Organisation said an interim analysis of clinical trial data from Sinovac's Covid-19 vaccine, showed it demonstrated "safety and good efficacy", although more data was still needed.

The health agency's Strategic Advisory Group of Experts on Immunization said the vaccine has yet to receive authorisation by what the WHO considers "a stringent regulatory authority".

Sinovac is among Chinese firms to have submitted data in applications for the WHO's emergency use listing, which opens the vaccine to be a part of the global Covax programme.

The two-shot vaccine is based on the technique of injecting the deactivated coronavirus in order to trigger an immune response.

According to Sinovac, over 200 million doses of its Covid-19 vaccine have been delivered to over 20 countries and that over 100 million doses of CoronaVac have been administered during the vaccination rollout in different countries.

(with AFP)

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