Thu, October 28, 2021

in-focus

Foreign Ministry issues statement explaining Covid-19 vaccine procurement process


The Foreign Ministry issued a statement on Thursday saying the government has attached the highest priority to the safety and quality of Covid-19 vaccines being procured.

The statement also said that all vaccines will first be approved by the Thai Food and Drug Administration before the population is administered shots.

The statement, released by the ministry’s permanent secretary Thani Thongphakdi, said Thailand has negotiated with all potential manufacturers and is not relying on any single candidate. However, it said, deals have only been confirmed with manufacturers that can accept Thailand’s terms and conditions.

Meanwhile, the statement said, AstraZeneca reviewed many companies in Thailand and decided that Siam Bioscience has the potential to manufacture viral vector vaccines. It also meets the requirement of producing at least 200 million doses per year.

Thailand’s arrangement with AstraZeneca to produce vaccines for local use as well for distribution to other countries in Southeast Asia is based on a “no profit, no loss” principle, the statement said.

Meanwhile, the Cabinet has approved Bt1 billion for the National Vaccine Institute to research and develop vaccines in Thailand. This budget will be divided among other manufacturers, like Baiya Phytofarm and Chulalongkorn University, who have the potential to develop a Covid-19 vaccine.

The statement also said the National Science and Technology Development Agency is working on developing a Covid-19 vaccine with Siam Bioscience.

As of Tuesday, Thailand has ordered 61 million doses of the vaccine from AstraZeneca and 2 million doses from China’s Sinovac. The director of the National Vaccine Institute has said the 63 million vaccines should be enough to cover the most vulnerable groups in Thailand.

Published : January 29, 2021

By : The Nation