Azerbaijan President Ilham Aliyev has lauded China for upholding the Covid-19 vaccine supply commitment, as he expressed concern over an apparent disparity in global vaccine distribution.
“Despite all the statements about solidarity and combined efforts against the coronavirus, in practice, we see that the picture is completely contrary. For example, some countries buy vaccines three or four times more than they need … This means that someone (else) would not (be able to) receive the jab,” he said on Friday.
Azerbaijan joined COVAX, a multinational vaccine-sharing initiative backed by the World Health Organization, at the very beginning when it was launched, Aliyev said.
Noting that “Chinese partners have remained true to their commitments,” the President said his country has yet to get any of the other vaccines it needs to receive, Xinhua reported.
He said that Azerbaijan has yet to receive AstraZeneca-Oxford, Pfizer-BioNTech, and Moderna vaccines under the initiative. “And we are not even told when we will get it,” he added.
Azerbaijan kicked off the nationwide immunisation programme in January, with the use of the CoronaVac jab developed by Chinese pharmaceutical firm Sinovac.
Ibrahim Mammadov, a spokesman for the Cabinet of Ministers, said earlier this week that more than 207,000 Azerbaijani citizens had received their first dose, while more than 35,000 people had been inoculated with the second dose.