by Cheng Xizhong
According to a report by Pakistani media Dawn on January 19, the Drug Regulatory Authority of Pakistan (DRAP) on Monday approved Chinese state-owned firm Sinopharm’s COVID-19 vaccine for emergency use.
DRAP Chief Executive Officer Dr. Asim Rauf said that the National Institute of Health (NIH) has got Sinopharm’s vaccine registered on its name. “The approval has been given for emergency use and it will pave the way for bringing the vaccine to Pakistan,” he added.
Pakistan has already pre-booked 1.2 million doses of Sinopharm’s COVID-19 vaccine and after DRAP’s approval, the process of its import will start immediately.
After the outbreak of the pandemic, countries around the world began to develop COVID-19 vaccines while fighting the pandemic. China was the first to start research and development of novel coronavirus vaccines.
Now, China is in the leading position in COVID-19 vaccine research and development in the world. China adheres to the principle of putting people first. Therefore, China’s COVID-19 vaccine research and development does not consider economic benefits, but only people’s health.
So far, China has got 14 COVID-19 vaccines into clinical trials, among them 5 have entered Phase III, which is, clinical trials and clinical use.
China’s COVID-19 vaccines are the most reliable with four characteristics, namely safety, effectiveness, accessibility and affordability, which has been recognized by World Health Organization (WHO) and many countries in the world. Leaders of many countries have expressed their willingness to be vaccinated with vaccines produced in China. For example, Japan’s health experts recently have urged their government to import Sinopharm vaccine from China.
I would like to mention that China’s vaccines do not need ultra-low temperature cold chain storage and transportation, which is a huge advantage for most countries, especially developing countries.
China considers its COVID-19 vaccines as global public goods and the developing countries, especially the friendly neighbor Pakistan, will have priority access to China’s COVID-19 vaccines.
China also positively considers providing vaccines to developing countries in various forms, including donations and free assistance.
As far as I know, the Pakistani people are eagerly looking forward to inoculation with the vaccines from China. Recently, there is a touching story. Iqbal, a 43-year-old Pakistani has received the second dose of COVID-19 vaccine in Shanghai. He is the first Pakistani to receive Sinopharm vaccine in China.
I firmly believe that the Chinese vaccines will effectively curb the spread of the pandemic in Pakistan and effectively protect the health of the Pakistani people.
Cheng Xizhong, Visiting Professor at Southwest University of Political Science and Law，Senior Fellow of the Charhar Institute, former Defense Attache in South Asian countries
Source: China Economic Net