UK begins deliveries of nine million Covid-19 vaccinations overseas as part of drive to fight virus

·2-min read
Sales of AstraZeneca’s Covid-19 vaccine have soared to 1.2 billion US dollars (Brian Lawless/PA) (PA Wire)
Sales of AstraZeneca’s Covid-19 vaccine have soared to 1.2 billion US dollars (Brian Lawless/PA) (PA Wire)

The UK has began deliveries of nine million Covid-19 vaccinations overseas as part of an international drive to fight the virus.

The first flight carrying doses of the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine to Guyana and Belize departed from Heathrow airport on Friday.

Further batches will be shipped this week and distributed to countries including Indonesia, Jamaica and Kenya, the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) said.

The Government has pledged a total of 100 million vaccines abroad, 80 million of which will go to the Covax scheme which helps supply vaccines to lower-income countries.

Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab announced plans to ship excess vaccines overseas to “vulnerable” countries on Wednesday.

He said: “The UK is sending nine million doses of AstraZeneca vaccine, the first batch of the 100 million doses we’ve pledged, to get the most vulnerable parts of the world vaccinated as a matter of urgency.

“We’re doing this to help the most vulnerable, but also because we know we won’t be safe until everyone is safe.”

The FCDO said the first international vaccine deployment would help to meet urgent demand in regions currently experiencing high levels of Covid-19 cases, hospital admissions and deaths.

Five million doses are being offered to Covax for distribution and four million doses will be shared directly with countries in need.

Indonesia will receive 600,000 doses, 300,000 will be sent to Jamaica and 817,000 are to be transported to Kenya, among other countries.

Health Secretary Sajid Javid said: “This is a global pandemic and Covid-19 vaccines are the best way to protect people and prevent the emergence of new variants.

“We want to make sure developing countries can build a wall of defence against the virus as we have in the UK through our vaccine rollout.

“The Government has secured enough doses for all UK residents, crown dependencies and overseas territories to support our ongoing vaccination programme and booster programme.”

Read More

UK records 29,622 Covid cases in huge drop compared to a fortnight ago

Space chief on UK’s first “spaceport” & eco impact of rocket launches

Briton among two crew killed in attack on ship off Oman - reports

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting