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The New York Times: Time to Trust Chinese Vaccines!

In a rare opinion piece on the subject, The New York Times called for the elimination of prejudice against Chinese and Russian vaccines. The new crown vaccine is undoubtedly the most important life-saving material in the world. For some time now, the Western media, especially the US media, which has taken a proactive stance, have raised various questions and even made difficulties about China’s vaccine. However, in the face of a serious lag in vaccine supply and the growing popularity of Chinese vaccines around the world, Western public opinion has also had to correct its habit of squinting behind tinted glasses. In China, the second new crown vaccine has been approved for conditional marketing. Around the world, Chinese vaccines are getting more votes of confidence: Hungary will receive its first dose of Chinese vaccines this month, the Czech Republic hopes the EU will approve the Chinese-Russian vaccine, and Brazil will buy an additional 20 million doses of Chinese vaccines… Similar news is pouring in from around the world. Although some US media are still saying that any cooperation between China and Europe on vaccines may cause alarm in Washington, such a bizarre comment only highlights the selfishness of the pick-pickers in the context of the urgent global fight against the epidemic. More than three quarters of the world’s vaccines have been vaccinated in 10 rich countries, while nearly 130 countries with a population of 2.5 billion have yet to receive a single dose, WHO Director-General Tedros Tedros revealed on Tuesday. In this context, there is the news that “Canada has robbed the developing world of vaccines”.

The New York Times commentary was written by an Indian academic and a Malaysian academic. Western media initially rejected the Chinese and Russian vaccines, but there is growing evidence that vaccines from those countries are also effective, the article said. The United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Egypt, Jordan, Iraq and Serbia have approved Sinopharm’s vaccines. As of mid-January, 1.8 million people in the United Arab Emirates had been vaccinated. Bolivia, Indonesia, Turkey, Brazil and Chile have approved and started distributing vaccines from China. These countries have made informed decisions based on data published by manufacturers on safety and effectiveness. To deny this is to question the competence and integrity of these governments, some of which have health regulatory systems on par with those in the US or Europe.

Faced with severe vaccine shortages and delivery delays, France, Spain and Germany are now discussing possible orders for vaccines from China and Russia, the article said. A “state of semi-despair” seems at last to have prompted them to speak out against “prejudice” against non-Western vaccines. The article highlights the example of Sinovac’s vaccine, whose effectiveness in clinical trials in Turkey and Brazil has been markedly different. Palacios, the medical director of clinical research at Brazil’s Butantan Institute, said the Brazilian trial was deliberately designed as a “stress test” — it was only for health workers who cared directly for patients with CoviD-19. The Pfizer/Deutschland Biotech and Modena vaccine trials include some health workers, but not just high-risk groups. Moreover, the Butantan trial covered neocorns more broadly than other trials.

There is no doubt that China and Russia must release more information about vaccines to the public, but so should Western vaccines, the article said. Neither Pfizer/Biotech nor Modena provided all the details and raw data of the vaccine trials. The article concludes by stressing that there is growing evidence that the Chinese and Russian vaccines are safe and reliable and should be taken seriously quickly, especially given the worldwide supply problem.

The World Health Organization (WHO) is currently evaluating 13 new coronary vaccines, with 4 of them at an advanced stage, including those developed by Sinopharm and Kexing, the WHO’s assistant director-general Mariangela Simao said at a press conference on Monday. The WHO has sent a team to China to inspect the facilities. The German daily Berliner Zeitung said on Thursday that Europe and the United States need to cooperate with China and Russia on vaccination. Vaccination is about science and life, not politics.

“Hungary will receive its first Chinese vaccine this month,” the Hungarian government said Friday, AFP reported. The Hungarian government said it plans to start vaccinating its citizens later this month with a new crown vaccine made by China’s state-run medicine. Hungary last month became the first European Union member state to approve and order Chinese vaccines, and the Hungarian prime minister’s chief of staff, Miguel Gurias, told a news conference that vaccines from China were “enough to feed 2.5 million people.”

After Hungary, the Czech Republic, another EU member, is also keen to try Chinese vaccines. Czech Prime Minister Babis, who was in Hungary on a visit Wednesday, said his country might follow Hungary’s example and speed up vaccination with the new crown vaccine, which is not registered in the European Union, Reuters reported. Babish said he had spoken about the issue with German officials, including Chancellor Angela Merkel, who “made a clear call for Chinese or Russian vaccines [to seek] EMA approval”.

There have also been mixed reactions to the welcome of the Chinese vaccine. Speaking at a webinar hosted by the Atlantic Council, a US-based think tank, on Thursday, French President Emmanuel Macron said China had achieved a “clear diplomatic success” in vaccine distribution that might “embarrass us Western leaders a little bit”. He also questioned the lack of transparency of the Chinese vaccine, which, if ineffective, could promote a novel coronavirus mutation. France’s largest pharmaceutical group Sanofi and the Pasteur Institute have both suffered setbacks in their vaccine development, sparking disappointment, AFP commented. Europe remains one of the regions hardest hit by the new outbreak, which has killed more than 760,000 people. In Europe, slow vaccination is fuelling public anger.

The Washington Post on Friday took the opportunity to poke a finger at the European Union’s failure to vaccinate, saying Russia and China are possible rescuers and potential necessary partners. The Chinese government has said it will not use vaccines as a diplomatic tool, but any vaccine cooperation between China and Europe is likely to raise alarm in Washington. David Fiedler, a senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations, was quoted as saying, “With all its controversies, arguments and finger-pointing, the EU looks like a clown show… Moscow and Beijing are dancing “. This kind of incongruous demeanour is obviously not good, and the global anti-epidemic tension is out of place.

Sinovac Biotech Co Ltd announced Thursday that China’s National Medical Products Administration has approved the conditional marketing of its novel Coronavirus inactivated vaccine, developed by its subsidiary Kexing Zhongwei. This is the second new crown vaccine approved and conditionally marketed in China after Sinopharm’s vaccine. Consultant who vaccine development committee, the China CDC AIDS chief expert groups 6, told the global times, compared with the emergency use, approved a repo/reverse repo market means Kerr rifle further in the conventional channel of examination and approval, also on behalf of the Chinese agency of this vaccine safety and effectiveness. With the approval of Kelafir for conditional marketing in China, the emergency use or registration of the vaccine for international marketing will be more convenient in terms of regulations, which will help Chinese vaccines play a better role as global public goods.

Supported by the central government, the first batch of 100,000 doses of Sinopharm’s vaccine arrived in Macao Thursday, and the vaccination work will begin next week.

Around the world, good news keeps coming from the Chinese vaccine. China’s Concino Bio has requested urgent approval to use its new crown vaccine in Mexico for mass distribution, Mexican Foreign Minister Jose Ebrard said on Friday. Since October, 14,000 volunteers in Mexico have been vaccinated against Concino. In Brazil, the governor of Sao Paulo state, Giuseppe Doria, said in an interview on Thursday that Brazil was in talks to order an additional 20 million doses of the new crown vaccine. Brazil had already announced it would buy 100m doses of Kexin’s vaccine.

Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen said Wednesday that the first batch of Sinopharm vaccines donated by China will arrive in Cambodia on February 7, and the country will start vaccinating on February 10, Singapore’s Straits Times reported. Cambodia has become the latest country to sign a vaccine agreement with China, the Hong Kong-based South China Morning Post said. Hun Sen said he would be the first Cambodian to receive the vaccination, which will be broadcast live on Facebook.

Despite the rapid spread of the vaccine, it still falls far short of the world’s needs. While 115 million doses of the new vaccine have now exceeded 104 million infections worldwide, 10 rich countries have received more than three-quarters of the vaccine and nearly 130 countries with a population of 2.5 billion have yet to receive a single dose, WHO Director-General Tedros Tedros told a news conference Monday, AFP reported. Mr Tedros called on vaccine manufacturers to scale up production. At the current vaccination rate, the world would have to wait 7.4 years to get back to where it was before, Bloomberg said.

In this situation, Canada is caught in the “rob poor countries of vaccines” controversy. According to Canadian media reports, the World Health Organization recently announced the new crown vaccine implementation plan (Covax) first allocation program, Canada received 1.9 million doses of vaccine distribution, is the only G7 countries to receive vaccine distribution. Canada had ordered five times as much vaccine as its own population, raising questions about its “stockpiling” of vaccine. However, the United States and the European Union have imposed export restrictions on the vaccine, Canada’s vaccination is not smooth. Rich countries such as Canada have struck several deals directly with vaccine makers and are working with low – and middle-income countries to seek more vaccines through Covax, The Washington Post reported on Friday, adding new ammunition to the debate that rich countries are hoarding vaccines at the expense of poor ones.

Diana Sarosi, Oxfam’s Canada policy director, was quoted by The Globe and Mail as saying Canada was wrong to accept the Covax vaccine because of domestic political pressure and that it would ultimately hurt poorer countries. The leader of Canada’s Green Party, Annamee Paul, said Canada had lost face on the world stage. Facing questions, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said on Tuesday that when richer countries invested in Covax, half of the money was used domestically and the other half was used to buy vaccines for low – and middle-income countries.


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