The COVAX vaccination program founded by multiple governments worldwide is turning to Chinese companies for COVID-19 vaccine supplies.
Founders of the program, including the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization(GAVI), the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI), and the World Health Organization (WHO) made the announcement on Monday, July 12.
The COVID-19 Vaccines Global Access, or COVAX, formed last year with a mission to distribute an equitable amount of vaccines to less advantageous countries has been joined by 165 countries.
Currently, two companies in China produce vaccines against the lethal virus, the Sinovac Biotech Ltd. and Sinopharm Group. Both have agreed to provide millions of jabs to the global vaccination effort.
According to Bloomberg, COVAX would acquire 60 million jabs from Sinopharm between July and October, and the company is expected to supply 110 million more later on. Sinovac will offer the campaign 380 million doses.
The global vaccine effort has been challenged because of a shortage of available vaccines.
AstraZeneca Plc from India was its leading supplier, but its distribution process has been compromised as the country was severely hit by the new wave of the CCP Virus (COVID-19).
Moderna Inc. was responsible for 500 million shots to be given to COVAX, but only a small portion has successfully been delivered this year.
Many developing countries have already administered the Chinese brand vaccines and even relied solely on them. Nonetheless, their reputation has not been very promising compared to the other jabs administered in the United States.
Bloomberg added that their efficiency was rated only between 50% and nearly 80% in trials and real-world studies.
A recent report from Thailand, where Sinovac was the main supplier of the vaccines, revealed that more than 600 frontline medics have tested positive for the virus despite being fully vaccinated, undermining public trust in the doses.
Other clients of the Chinese jabs such as the United Arab Emirates, Seychelles, Mongolia, Uruguay, and Chile have witnessed an increase in infections.
Last month an update from the New York Times stated that countries that bet on the Chinese-originated vaccines were actually struggling with outbreaks.
The Biden administration also disapproved of the Chinese products, said the Washington Free Beacon, which stated from a source that the president forbids the WHO from using U.S. funding to purchase the doses.
The U.S. has pledged to donate 500 million vaccine doses to developing countries.