Two National Covid-19 Task Force officials inpect a box containing half-finished Sinovac vaccine upon arrival at the Soekarno-Hatta Airport from China on Jan. 12, 2021. (Photo courtesy of the National Disaster Mitigation Agency)

Indonesia Receives 15 Million Doses of Half-Finished Sinovac Vaccine

BY :DINA MANAFE

JANUARY 12, 2021

Jakarta. The Indonesian government on Tuesday received 15 million doses of half-finished coronavirus vaccine developed by China’s Sinovac Biotech for final production and distribution by state-run pharmaceutical company Bio Farma.

The shipment followed two previous deliveries totaling 3 million doses of Sinovac vaccine and arrived a day after the Food and Drug Supervisory Agency (BPOM) granted emergency use authorization of the vaccine.

President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo will become among the first to receive the first jab of Sinovac’s CoronaVac vaccine on Wednesday on live television, the State Palace has confirmed.

National Covid-19 Task Force Head Doni Monardo visited cargo termial at the Soekarno-Hatta Airport in Tangerang, Banten, to witness the arrival of the half-finished vaccine.

“We are grateful that the third batch of delivery will allow the government to increase supplies for the people,” Doni said.

The government has targeted to vaccinate at least 181 million of the country’s 270 million population until the end of the year. 

Earlier on Monday, the BPOM approved immediate use of Sinovac after getting results from the phase three clinical trial involving more than 1,600 volunteers in Bandung, West Java.

BPOM Head Penny Kusumastuti Lukito said the agency also took trial results in other countries into consideration.

“Results from the phase three clinical trial of Coronavax vaccine in Bandung demonstrate a 65.3 percent efficacy, in comparison to a 91.5 percent efficacy during a similar trial in Turkey and 78 percent in Brazil,” Penny said.

She noted that the World Health Organization requires a minimum 50 percent efficacy for the use of a Coronavirus vaccine.

Indonesia has inked a deal to procure at least 125 million doses of Sinovac vaccine to be produced jointly with Bio Farma.

In addition to Sinovac vaccine, the government has secured supply commitment from British pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca and US-based vaccine producer Novavax, each will deliver 50 million doses.
 

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