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Taiwan receives another batch of 626,000 AZ vaccine doses

ROC Central News Agency

07/07/2021 04:49 PM

Taoyuan, July 7 (CNA) Taiwan on Wednesday took delivery of another shipment of AstraZeneca (AZ) brand vaccine it bought from the British pharmaceutical company, this time containing 626,000 doses.

The shipment arrived at Taoyuan International Airport at around 3:17 p.m. on a China Airlines cargo flight from Bangkok.

On arrival, the vaccine was transported to a designated cold storage logistics center for follow-up inspection and sealing operations, according to the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC).

According to the CECC, the AZ COVID-19 vaccine is packaged in multiple-dose form, with each vial containing 10 doses.

The vaccine can be stored at a temperature of 2 to 8 degrees Celsius and the expiration date of the batch of doses is Oct. 30.

The shipment is part of a 10 million dose purchasing contract Taiwan signed with AstraZeneca Taiwan on Oct. 30, 2020.

Before Wednesday's shipment, Taiwan had taken delivery of three shipments of the AZ vaccine -- 117,000 doses purchased directly from AZ in March, 199,200 doses obtained through COVAX in April, and another 410,400 doses obtained via COVAX on May 19.

It also received a donation of 1.24 million doses of the AZ vaccine from Japan in early June that was not part of the quantity ordered.

Japan is scheduled to make a second COVID-19 vaccine donation to Taiwan of 1.13 million AZ shots on Thursday.

 


Taiwan has signed contracts to purchase about 20 million vaccine doses from abroad, including 5.05 million doses of Moderna, of which it has received 800,000 so far, 10 million doses of AZ, and 4.76 million of unspecified brands through the COVAX program.

It has also signed contracts to buy 10 million doses of vaccines from two Taiwanese companies, whose vaccines only recently completely Phase 2 trials.

However, even with a donation from the United States of 2.5 million doses of Moderna and the 1.24 million doses donated by Japan, Taiwan has currently received fewer than 6 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines.

According to experts, Taiwan will need to vaccinate at least 60 percent of its population to achieve herd immunity and safely reopen to the outside world, which means acquiring around 30 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines.

At of Tuesday, 11.45 percent of Taiwan's 23 million population had received at least one COVID-19 vaccine shot.

(By Wu Ruei-chi and Joseph Yeh)

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