AstraZeneca announces first lot of Covid jabs ready for rollout


Pharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca officially launched its supply chain in Thailand on Wednesday, saying the first lot of locally produced Covid-19 vaccines was ready to be rolled out.

The supply chain was established in partnership with Siam Bioscience, a Thai manufacturer specialising in biopharmaceutical medicines, to support broad and equitable access to the vaccine in Southeast Asia.

AstraZeneca will deliver the first locally produced vaccine doses to the Thai Public Health Ministry, so it can kick off the mass vaccine rollout. Distribution to other Southeast Asian countries will commence in the coming weeks.

“This is a major milestone in the battle against Covid-19.

Ramping up the production of our vaccine in Thailand in only a few months is a tremendous achievement, thanks to the outstanding collaboration with our manufacturing partner, Siam Bioscience,” said James Teague, president of AstraZeneca (Thailand).

“Now that we are ready to deliver high-quality vaccine produced locally, we can help the Thai government achieve its goal of ensuring the effective vaccination of people in Thailand as quickly as possible.”

The first doses of the locally produced AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine have won the stamp for quality and safety by both local regulators and international testing laboratories, allowing their release this week. Each batch of the vaccine undergoes more than 60 different quality assurance control tests and review processes.

AstraZeneca has established a global supply network, with 16 supply chains and 25 manufacturing partners in more than 15 countries.

Siam Bioscience is the only manufacturing site of AstraZeneca’s vaccine in Southeast Asia and will play a critical role in the supply to other Southeast Asian countries. The vaccine will be ready for export in July.

AstraZeneca’s Covid-19 vaccine is well-tolerated and highly effective against all disease severities across all adults in clinical trials. Emerging real-world evidence from tens of millions of people also shows that the vaccine reduces severe disease and hospital admissions by more than 80 per cent after the first dose.

AstraZeneca has committed to supply its Covid-19 vaccine globally without profit during the pandemic.

To date, the company has supplied over 500 million doses to 168 countries.