China joins COVAX global vaccine alliance

FILE PHOTO: A small bottle labeled with a "Vaccine" sticker is held near a medical syringe in front of displayed "Coronavirus COVID-19" words in this illustration taken April 10, 2020. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration

Beijing, Oct. 9, 2020 (dpa/Naija247news) China’s foreign ministry said on Friday the country has joined the global COVAX vaccine alliance, which aims to supply doses of the COVID-19 vaccine to low and middle-income countries.

The Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman, Hua Chunying, said in a statement.

China has, thus, become the biggest economy to support the initiative, which has so far been joined by more than 150 countries, according to the UN.

The programme is run by Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI), and the World Health Organisation (WHO).

The U.S. and Russia have refused to join the initiative.

“This is an important measure for China to uphold the concept of a community of human health and fulfil its commitment to promote vaccines as a global public product,” said Hua.

The statement did not go into detail as to what China’s contribution will be.

Chinese President Xi Jinping said earlier a COVID-19 vaccine developed by China would be a global public good.

China currently has four coronavirus vaccine candidates in stage 3 clinical trials.

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