ISLAMABAD: Pakistan on Monday said it has signed agreements to procure about 30 million doses of the coronavirus vaccine from abroad, as the number of COVID-19 cases continued to rise in the country.
Special Assistant on National Health Services Dr Faisal Sultan, addressing the media, said the vaccination drive was progressing smoothly in Pakistan.
He said 19 million doses will be received by June this year and that “we are not relying on donations (from other countries) but 90 per cent of the vaccine doses are being purchased.”
Sultan said vaccination of people aged above 40 years has started from Monday.
He said 150,000 vaccine doses were being administered daily, and the official target was to raise it to 300,000 doses per day.
He said 70 million people will be vaccinated against COVID-19 by the end of this year.
The senior official also said that Pakistan will soon start production of the Chinese CanSino vaccine.
Dependence on imported doses will reduce as 3 million doses of the CanSino vaccine will be prepared at the National Institute of Health every month, he said.
The announcement was made as Pakistan for the time recorded less 100 deaths per day since April 25 when 70 people died in the last 24 hours, taking the number of COVID-19 deaths to 18,149, according to the Ministry of National Health Services.
At least 4,213 new cases were reported in this period, pushing the national tally of confirmed cases to 834,146 in the country.
The positivity rate was 9.17 per cent.
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