Malaysia to sign up for global access


  • Nation
  • Sunday, 20 Sep 2020

PETALING JAYA: Malaysia will join the Covid-19 Vaccine Global Access Facility (Covax) to obtain part of the vaccine supplies.

“The government is discussing terms for Malaysia’s entry with the Global Alliance for Vaccine and Immunisation (Gavi), which is operating Covax, ” said the Science, Technology and Innovation Ministry.

Covax is an initiative launched by Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, the World Health Organisation and the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations.

In addition to Covax, the Science, Technology and Innovation Ministry said it was also working with other parties to obtain Covid-19 vaccines. “We are preparing an agreement to enter the Coalition for Epidemic and Preparedness Innovations (Cepi) as well as a government-to-government agreement with China to receive access to the vaccine being developed by pharmaceutical companies in the country.

“The Malaysian government, through the Health Ministry, has also signed several non-disclosure agreements with international pharmaceutical companies that are undergoing phase three testing of their vaccine to discuss vaccine

supply, ” it said in a statement yesterday.

It added that Malaysia’s approach to participate in Covax, besides forging cooperation with other countries and discussing with pharmaceutical companies, would ensure Malaysia would receive the required amount of vaccines.

This would also ensure that vaccine supplies are being obtained fast after proof of safety and effectiveness, as well as purchasing them at a reasonable price.

On Friday, the Malaysian Medical Association (MMA) said Malaysia was not among the 172 countries that had signed up before the Sept 18 deadline to join Covax.

“MMA believes even if Malaysia has its own bilateral negotiations for a vaccine, signing up for the Covax Vaccine Plan can be an added option that will guarantee access to vaccines for Covid-19, ” president Dr N. Ganabaskaran said.

On Aug 20, Science, Technology and Innovation Minister Khairy Jamaluddin said it would recommend that Covid-19 vaccine be provided for free to all Malaysians.

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