The United States sent two million doses of COVID-19 vaccines to Vietnam on Tuesday, the White House reported, all of that aid to countries battling the pandemic.
A source from the White House told AFP that Moderna’s doses – part of the first 80 million that President Joe Biden has promised to spread worldwide – are due to arrive in Vietnam this weekend.
“This is just the beginning of the doses that will be shipped to Southeast Asia,” the source said.
One million people left for Malaysia on Monday, and at the end of last week the White House said it would “soon” send four million to Indonesia.
Other countries in the region that expect vaccines from the United States include Cambodia, Laos, Papua New Guinea, the Philippines and Thailand.
Vietnam, which borders China, was initially a model for epidemic resistance. But vaccination rates are relatively low among its population of 97 million, and in recent weeks infections have accelerated sharply.
The informant said the shipment to Vietnam, which was made through the Covax mechanism, coordinated by the World Health Organization, is part of a strategy to “end the epidemic everywhere.”
The source commented that this donation does not compete with Russia and China in the so-called “vaccine diplomacy.”
“We don’t send those doses for concessions or concessions. Our vaccines don’t arrive on binding terms,” he repeated, repeating a phrase the White House used to say.
sms / caw / gm / dga