KUALA LUMPUR, July 28 — Malaysia is among the first batch of countries to receive a donation of Covid-19 vaccines from the UK government.
Malaysia is expected to receive 415,000 doses of the AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine for its National Covid-19 Immunisation Programme (NIP).
Senior Foreign Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein thanked the British government for its donation during Malaysia’s health crisis.
“Malaysia is highly appreciative of the invaluable support extended by the UK and believe that both countries could work together on many productive endeavours to weather the storm of this pandemic towards meaningful recovery,” he said in a statement this evening.
He hinted at the possibility of reciprocal collaborations such as creating a “travel bubble” for those who have been vaccinated.
In a separate statement, the British High Commission in Malaysia said the AstraZeneca vaccine donation is first tranche of 100 million vaccines that UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson had previously pledged to share during last month’s G7 Summit in Cornwall.
The UK Secretary of Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs Dominic Raab said in the statement that five million doses are being sent to the World Health Organisation and the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations under a scheme by the Covid-19 Vaccines Global Access (Covax) to ensure equitable, global access to Covid-19 vaccines.
“Covax will urgently distribute them to lower-income countries via an equitable allocation system, which prioritises delivering vaccines to people who most need them. Another four million doses will be shared directly with countries in need,” Raab said.
According to Raab, at least 80 million of the 100 million doses will go to Covax, with the rest going to countries directly, following the pledge G7 leaders made to vaccinate the world and end the pandemic in 2022.