Another 1.6 M doses of Sinopharm arrive
The Chinese government sent another shipment of 1.6 million doses of Sinopharm COVID-19 vaccine to Sri Lanka. The two Sri Lankan Airlines flights carrying the vaccines, UL869 and UL865, arrived at 5.30 a.m. yesterday (27) at Bandaranaike International Airport in Katunayake.
The Chinese Ambassador to Sri Lanka, Qi Zhenhong, officially handed over the vaccines to President Gotabaya Rajapaksa at the Presidential Secretariat yesterday. In addition to the vaccines, syringes have been provided.
The vaccines were given to the Ministry of Health, who will distribute them to people over the age of 30 in the Northern and Eastern Provinces. Seventy-two per cent (72%) of the vaccines used in the vaccination process in Sri Lanka are Sinopharm. President Rajapaksa expressed his gratitude to the Chinese Government for its assistance in combating COVID-19, which included the donation of 600,000 doses of Sinopharm vaccines on 31 March, 500,000 on 26 May, and the 1.6 million doses received yesterday.
The President pointed out that by the end of August, everyone over the age of 30 will be vaccinated, and tourism activities will be able to begin in September. Therefore, the Chinese people are invited to return to Sri Lanka, the President added. Ministers Pavithra Wanniarachchi, Douglas Devananda, Secretary to the President P.B. Jayasundera, Senior Advisor to President Lalith Weeratunga, Foreign Secretary Admiral Jayanath Colombage, and the Political Officer of the Chinese Embassy Luo Chong were also present on the occasion.