Cuba kicks off Covid vaccine exports with shipment to Vietnam

Cuba Kicks Off Covid Vaccine Exports With Shipment To Vietnam
A vial of the Cuban Soberana 2 vaccine. Photo: Jorge Luis Baños/AFP via Getty
Share this article

By Marc Frank

Cuba said on Saturday it had exported its three-shot Abdala coronavirus vaccine for the first time, sending an initial shipment to Vietnam as part of a contract to supply five million doses to the Southeast Asian country.

Scientists in the Communist-run island have developed three home-grown vaccines against Covid-19, all of which are waiting to receive official recognition from the World Health Organization.

State-run pharmaceutical corporation BioCubaFarma made Saturday's export announcement on Twitter after saying earlier this week it had produced enough doses to meet a target to immunise more than 90 per cent of the local population by mid-November.

BioCubaFarma says it has the annual capacity to produce 100 million doses of the Abdala, Soberana 2 and Soberana Plus vaccines, which it said recently reduced by about 90 per cent the risk of becoming seriously ill or dying from the disease.


A sticker of the Cuban vaccine Abdala is seen on the windshield of a car in Havana. Photo: Yamil Lage/AFP via Getty

Hard-hit by the pandemic, the Caribbean nation has seen vital exports such as tourism collapse and other foreign exchange earnings dwindle – creating shortages of food, medicine and other essential goods.

BioCubaFarma corporate vice president Mayda Mauri said once domestic supply goals had been met, Cuba would also start supplying vaccines to countries including Iran and Venezuela.

“There are very advanced conversations and exchanges on regulatory matters with Argentina and with other countries in various regions of the world,” state media quoted Mauri as stating.

Iran is already producing the Soberana-2 vaccine.

Vietnam, Argentina and Mexico have said they hope to produce the Cuban vaccines soon, while a number of countries are using other Cuban drugs in their Covid-19 treatment protocols.

Read More

Want us to email you top stories each lunch time?

Download our Apps
© 2021, developed by Square1 and powered by