Deputy PM orders all-out efforts for import of COVID-19 vaccines hinh anh 1Deputy PM Vu Duc Dam (Photo: VNA)
Hanoi (VNA) – All possible measures must be taken and all obstacles must be addressed to soon secure COVID-19 vaccines, Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam, who is also Head of the National Steering Committee for COVID-19 Prevention and Control, said at a meeting on May 31.

According a report presented by the Ministry of Health at the meeting, toward the goal of reaching herd immunity by the end of 2021, the ministry has worked drastically on the mission over the past months via meetings and negotiations with vaccine producers, as well as health units and diplomatic representatives of countries that produce the vaccines.

Minister of Health Nguyen Thanh Long affirmed that the target of importing 150 million doses of vaccines this year is possible.

He also encouraged all capable localities and businesses to join hands in importing the vaccines.

Currently, Vietnam has 27 companies that have the function of importing and trading vaccines. The Ministry of Health has to date licensed AstraZeneca and Sputnik V vaccines and is reviewing records of two other vaccines.

Acknowledging such efforts, Dam noted vaccines that have been licensed by the World Health Organisation (WHO), even if their manufacturers have yet to apply for a license in Vietnam, can still be imported. For the vaccines that have yet to get a licence from WHO but having been licensed for use by other countries, the ministry will immediately licence these vaccines when a local company can access them, he said.

Long informed that if the application for a licence is valid, the licence can be granted within five days.

The Deputy PM stated that Vietnam always adheres to the UN’s principle of fair vaccine access. He requested the Ministry of Health to urgently issue a circular guiding the registration for circulation in urgent cases for COVID-19 vaccines with simplified procedures, ensuring that all capable businesses are guided and provided with the best conditions.

In the coming time, the Ministry of Health will continue to introduce policies to encourage more localities and businesses to participate in the nation’s search for COVID-19 vaccines, Long said, adding that it will create best conditions possible for all localities, units and businesses in vaccine importing, licesing and testing processes./.