China will be sending 300,000 doses of coronavirus vaccine to Nepal, ten days after India sent one million doses of Covid-19 vaccine there, marking the launch of a nationwide inoculation drive in the Himalayan country.
The Chinese Embassy in Kathmandu said in a statement that China has decided to provide 300,000 doses of Covid-19 vaccine under grant assistance to Nepal, which would benefit 150,000 Nepali citizens.
"China and Nepal are good neighbours, good friends and good partners. Facing whatever challenges like the earthquake and the pandemic, the two countries have always supported and helped each other through thick and thin," the statement said.
In order to implement Chinese President Xi Jinping's solemn commitment that China will make its vaccine a global public good once available, and on the request of the Nepali government, the Chinese government has decided to provide Covid-19 vaccine to Nepal.
"Despite huge demands for the vaccines both in China and across the world at present, the Chinese government has prioritised Nepal in providing the vaccines, fully demonstrating the great importance it shares the bond with Nepal," the statement added.
The vaccine to be provided to Nepal was developed by Sinopharm and has already got conditional marketing approval in China with over 24 million doses having been administered until January 31.
"After a two-dose inoculation procedure, the vaccine shows 79.34 per cent efficacy against coronavirus, and the seroconversion rate of neutralising antibodies reached 99.52 per cent."
The Embassy said that it is coordinating with Nepali authorities on the registration for emergency use and receipt of the vaccine and would like to deliver the vaccines to Nepal at the earliest so as to help the country win the Covid battle.
"China is willing to work together with Nepal to build a community of health for all and further strengthen and promote the strategic partnership of cooperation featuring the ever-lasting friendship for development and prosperity between the two countries," the statement said.