Nepal receives 130,000 doses of AstraZeneca vaccine from UKThe jabs are part of grant assistance from the British government, the embassy says.
Nepal on Thursday received around 130,000 doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine provided by the United Kingdom under grant assistance.
The British embassy in Kathmandu said on Thursday that 130,000 plus doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine were handed over to Nepal, as part of the United Kingdom’s direct bilateral support.
“The vaccines were received by the Ministry of Health and Population’s Chief Specialist Dr Dipendra Raman Singh and were driven straight from the airport to Teku Hospital, to be stored in cold storage and readied for distribution,” said the embassy.
The vaccine support from the UK comes as a respite for Nepal that is struggling to scale up its vaccination drive against Covid-19.
“I am delighted to be here today at the airport in Kathmandu as over 130,000 AstraZeneca vaccine doses donated to Nepal by the UK have just arrived in Nepal,” the statement quoted British ambassador to Nepal Nicola Pollitt as saying after the vaccine handover. “The UK is Nepal’s oldest friend, with a strong partnership that has lasted for more than two hundred years. We have been supporting the Nepali people to fight this pandemic.”
The AstraZeneca vaccine doses from the UK have arrived in Nepal on the heels of the Japan government’s shipment of over 1.6 million doses of the same type of vaccine earlier this week.
Earlier this month, Japan shipped 1.6 million doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine, in four tranches, to Nepal under COVAX, an international vaccine-sharing scheme backed by the United Nations.
As of Monday, Nepal had received over 13,227,590 doses of vaccines–AstraZeneca, Vero Cell and Janssen under grant from various countries and COVAX.
As of Monday, 4,943,732 people (16.47 percent) had taken their first dose of vaccine and 3,857,598 people (12.85 percent) had been fully vaccinated, either with the AstraZeneca vaccine (manufactured in India, Japan, and Europe), Vero Cell, developed by China’s Sinopharm, and Janssen by Johnson and Johnson of the United States of America.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs thanked the government of the United Kingdom for supplying the vaccines.
“The United Kingdom has granted 130,000 doses of Covid-19 AstraZeneca vaccine to Nepal. We thank the government and people of the UK for cooperation,” the Foreign Ministry wrote on Twitter.