M'sia thanks US for donation of one million Pfizer-BioNtech Covid-19 vaccine doses

PETALING JAYA: Malaysia thanks the United States for donating one million doses of the Pfizer-BioNTec Covid-19 vaccine, says Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein (pic).

The Foreign Minister said Wisma Putra welcomed the arrival of the contribution from the United States, which is scheduled to arrive on Monday (July 5).

"On behalf of the Government of Malaysia, I would like to once again express my sincere gratitude to my counterpart, Antony Blinken (US Secretary of State) and the US Government for the generous contribution of its Covid-19 vaccines," Hishammuddin said in a statement Sunday (July 4).

The doses are from an initial batch of 80 million US-made vaccines the Biden administration pledged last month to share globally amidst concern about the disparity in vaccination rates between advanced and developing nations.

Malaysia is expected to receive a total of 12 million doses of various Covid-19 vaccines in July.

Hishammuddin said these vaccines will greatly intensify Malaysia’s vaccination process and make meaningful progress to the ongoing rollout of Malaysia’s National Covid-19 Immunisation Programme.

"The United States, through its embassy in Kuala Lumpur, has also been extending various assistance and contributions to Malaysia since the start of the pandemic last year, including the in-kind contribution of medical supplies, personal protective equipment (PPE), and ICT equipment, worth US$250,000 (RM1.04mil)," he said.

Malaysia, Hishammuddin added, was highly appreciative of the invaluable support extended thus far by the US and hoped that the close and friendly ties will be further strengthened for the mutual benefits of the two countries.

"As conveyed earlier in my letter on June 4 to Secretary Blinken, I would also like to reiterate that Malaysia welcomes President Joe Biden's June 3rd announcement of the United States' expression of support for temporary waiver of the intellectual property (IP) protection on Covid-19 vaccines," said Hishammuddin.

Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin had also announced in his address to the Nikkei International Conference in May, of Malaysia's support for the IP

protection waiver for Covid-19 vaccines, noted Hishammuddin.

"In the common pursuit for equitable global access to the Covid-19 vaccines, Malaysia stands ready to establish all-round cooperation with the United States in vaccine research, development and distribution," said the Foreign Minister.

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