Taiwan close to securing second-generation COVID-19 vaccines: CECC

21-Jul-2021 Intellasia | FocusTaiwan | 5:02 AM Print This Post

Taiwan’s government is close to securing second-generation COVID-19 vaccines, Health and Welfare minister Chen Shih-chung said Monday, though he provided no other details.

Speaking at a Central Epidemic Command centre (CECC) press briefing, Chen said negotiations to buy second-generation vaccines were in “the final stage” and were “almost complete.”

He did not elaborate on which company the CECC was planning on making the purchase from or how many doses it was looking to buy.

On July 12, Cabinet spokeperson Lo Ping-cheng said the government was planning on purchasing at least 15 million doses of Moderna’s second generation COVID-19 vaccine in the next two years, but it was not known if that was the vaccine Chen was referring to.

Chen’s comment came in response to a question on what he thought of a discussion among top Taipei officials about the possibility of the city government purchasing second-generation vaccines.

In a part of the discussion televised by a local TV news station on Sunday, Taipei deputy Mayor Huang Shan-shan said the city should buy second-generation vaccines for its residents, even if it meant issuing government bonds.

On Monday, Mayor Ko Wen-che, who was part of the televised meeting, said the city has not yet decided whether to go forward with the purchase.

There are still six months to go before annual budgets are approved, and the city will use the time to determine whether second-generation vaccines are needed, Ko said.

As of Monday, just over 21 percent of Taiwan’s population had received one dose of either the AstraZeneca or Moderna COVID-19 vaccine, and only around 0.6 percent had received the required two doses to be considered fully vaccinated.

As COVID-19 variants emerge, including the highly infectious Delta variant, several pharmaceutical companies are developing second-generation vaccines geared to offer better protection against these new variants.



Category: Taiwan

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