China will be supplying its COVID-19 vaccines for use in Solomon Islands once they are certified and approved for use by the World Health Organization this year.
Deputy Ambassador of the Peoples Republic of China (PRC) to Solomon Islands Yao Ming says that his government is ready and willing to contribute once their vaccine(s) are approved and it will be made available this year to Solomon Islands.
He says they are willing to support Solomon Islands vaccinate its entire population as announced by the Prime Minister.
According to Ming, China has two vaccines now ready for certification and approval for use by the WHO.
He reveals that countries that engaged with China in the human phase trial have already signed agreements and vaccines have been dispatched for use already by their governments. However, he adds that in the case of the Solomon Islands, the Government will only approve vaccines for use here once they are certified and approved by the WHO.
In that regard, he told this magazine and SIBC that they will dispatch the Chinese made vaccines once they are approved by the WHO to Honiara.
Asked if China is going to help Solomon Islands with COVID-19 vaccine, Ming reiterates: “Yes just as last year we have worked well in assisting Solomon Islands built its COVID-19 testing capabilities. This year (the) cooperation on vaccine will be a top priority between the two countries’ health departments.”
“My Embassy has been reached by (Ministry of Health in Honiara) senior officials last year regarding our vaccination capability. As my president says we are committed to making the vaccine a public good for the international community,” says Ming.
Meanwhile he said Indonesia has already received a big amount of Chinese made vaccines and President Widodo (Indonesian President) has already taken a jab himself.
Ming confirms that his government has already signed agreements with 16 countries to provide them with Chinese made vaccines.
Prime Minister Sogavare announced last week that he hoped to vaccinate the entire government against COVID-19 by the end of 2021.
The government is to start vaccinating with the U.S made vaccine, Pfizer.