SEREMBAN: Malaysia has handled the Covid-19 pandemic well and must now move towards vaccine development, says Datuk Seri Mohamad Hasan.
The Umno deputy president said the development of vaccines was a field which Malaysia must build, and not remain a mere consumer or medical testing ground.
"Pandemics are a non-traditional threat, thus investment into research and development of vaccines is of strategic importance.
"It is true that we currently do not possess the expertise but science is about collaboration and the sharing of knowledge in a productive ecosystem," he said in a statement on Tuesday (April 20).
The Rantau assemblyman said being part of an advanced scientific ecosystem across disciplines and geography was no longer a choice but now a necessity.
Separately, Mohamad said although the government had started the second phase of the Covid-19 vaccination programme, there was still doubt about the speed of the nation's vaccination process.
"This is where the government's clarification is vital as disclosing a realistic schedule for vaccination would relieve all of society's frustrations," he said.
Mohamad added that a large number of foreigners, especially those without valid documents, did not know how to register and convincing them to do so was no easy task either.
"These factors require Malaysia to have a solid clinical, vaccination, mitigation and prevention plan," he said.