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Tuesday Jan 05 2021

Russia interested in getting COVID-19 vaccine Sputnik V registered in Pakistan: sources

Representational image. —  Reuters/File
  • Russian official says Sputnik V 91.4% effective against coronavirus 
  • Sputnik V vaccine can be stored at -2 degree Celcius to -8 degree
  • Vaccine is easier to store than other vaccines, says Russian official

In a letter written to prime minister's aide Dr Faisal Sultan, the head of the Russian Direct Investment Fund, Kirill Dmitriev, has expressed an interest in getting their vaccine registered in Pakistan.

The Russian official, according to sources, has sought details about getting the COVID-19 vaccine Sputnik V registered in Pakistan.

In the letter, Dmitriev said that Sputnik V is one of the first registered vaccines in the world which has been "certified for emergency use."

Read more: Procurement of one million coronavirus vaccines authorised

The Russian official reportedly said that the vaccine is 91.4% effective against the virus, adding that it would be available for public use in February 2021.

He said that the vaccine's price had fallen down from $22 to $10 per dose, adding that the vaccine was much cheaper as compared to others.

The Sputnik V vaccine can be stored at -2 degrees Celcius to -8, he wrote in the letter, per sources, adding that "Sputnik V is easier to store than other vaccines."

Read more: How much would Pfizer, Moderna and Oxford vaccines cost in Pakistan?

In November, the Sputnik V proved to be 92% effective in preventing coronavirus during interim trial results, the country's sovereign wealth fund had said.

Russia registered Sputnik V for public use in August 2019, the first country to do so, though the approval came before the start of the large-scale trial in September.

Russia vaccinates over 800,000 people 

Russia has inoculated more than 800,000 people against the new coronavirus and more than 1.5 million vaccine doses have been dispatched, Health Minister Mikhail Murashko had said two days earlier.

Russia has the world’s fourth-highest number of COVID-19 cases and is placing high hopes on several vaccines it plans to produce.

From January 1, people who are inoculated in Russia will get an electronic vaccination certificate, the TASS news agency quoted Murashko as saying. The ministry is keeping a database of Russians who have been vaccinated, TASS reported.

The Sputnik V vaccine, which Russia already started supplying to other countries, is administered in two doses, which use different components, 21 days apart.

Russia sent 300,000 doses of the vaccine to Argentina last week, causing frustration at home, with some people arguing that more shots should be made available at home.