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Morocco : India’s AstraZeneca vaccine delivery postponed indefinitely

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India’s Serum Institute of India, which was approached by Morocco for the Covid-19 AstraZeneca vaccine, will dispatch its first overseas consignment of 20 lakh does of said vaccine to Brazil by the end of January, chief executive officer (CEO) Adar Poonawalla said on Friday.

The announcement comes after it has been said that Morocco will receive the vaccine doses this week, with the objective of launching the long-awaited vaccination campaign in the country during the same week.

«The consignment will be moved from the company’s manufacturing unit in Pune to Mumbai airport in a refrigerated truck. A specially equipped aircraft from Brazil is expected to airlift the vaccine doses from Mumbai», Times of India reported.

«SII has 50 million doses of the vaccine ready at its Manjari plant in Pune. Besides, it has scaled up its production to 50-70 million doses per month since the beginning of 2021», the same source explained.

In addition to Latin America, the Indian company will be answering the needs of countries in South Asia, and South Africa. «However, our first priority has always been our own country. Once that is taken care of, we can start exporting the vaccine doses to other countries in full swing», Poonawalla said. The AstraZeneca vaccine doses were dispatched across India between January 12 and 14, it concluded.

During a Reuters Next conference, Poonawalla said that SII has been approached by Morocco for the AstraZeneca vaccine. It is not clear when the delivery would reach Morocco.

For the record, the head of Morocco’s National Doctors group told Yabiladi last week that the vaccination campaign in the Kingdom will likely start this week.

It is worth mentioning that Morocco authorized the use of the AstraZeneca vaccine, developed in collaboration with the Oxford University. The Moroccan government announced it had ordered 65 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines from China's Sinopharm and Britain's AstraZeneca.

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