Malaysia lauds WHO approval of China’s Sinovac COVID-19 vaccine

File photo shows Malaysia's Science, Technology and Innovation Minister Khairy Jamaluddin displaying the vaccine vial as he attends a press conference after receiving a dose of COVID-19 vaccine made by Chinese biopharmaceutical company Sinovac Biotech at the Rembau Hospital in Negeri Sembilan state of Malaysia, March 18, 2021. (Xinhua/Zhu Wei)

KUALA LUMPUR, June 3 (Xinhua) — The World Health Organization (WHO)’s approval of the CoronaVac COVID-19 vaccine developed by Chinese pharmaceutical company Sinovac Biotech will boost confidence in Malaysia, Malaysia’s Science, Technology and Innovation Minister Khairy Jamaluddin said Wednesday.

Khairy, who is also the coordinating minister for Malaysia’s national COVID-19 immunization program, said the move by the world health body showed the vaccine is safe and effective.

“The Sinovac vaccine is now approved by WHO. This global recognition is a boost of confidence as our 12 million doses supply of Sinovac will ensure that 18 percent of our population will benefit from the vaccine. It’s safe and effective,” he said in a post on social media.

A medical worker injects a dose of COVID-19 vaccine made by Chinese biopharmaceutical company Sinovac Biotech for Malaysia’s Science, Technology and Innovation Minister Khairy Jamaluddin at the Rembau Hospital in Negeri Sembilan state of Malaysia, March 18, 2021. (Photo by Chong Voon Chung/Xinhua)

The Sinovac vaccines have been used in Malaysia’s national immunization program since the country’s National Pharmaceutical Regulatory Agency (NPRA) granted conditional approval in March.

Malaysia’s leading pharmaceutical company Pharmaniaga is also in partnership with Sinovac to produce locally fill-and-finish vaccine as the first ever human vaccines produced in Malaysia, which in turn is a significant milestone for Malaysia’s pharmaceutical industry. ■