Pakistan, June 9 (Reuters) – Pakistan on Wednesday hailed the administering of 10 million doses of coronavirus vaccines as an important step towards its goal of vaccinating 70 million people by the end of the year.
“Thank God, we have succeeded in administering 10 million vaccine (doses),” the minister in-charge for COVID-19 operations, Asad Umar, told a ceremony to mark the milestone in Islamabad.
“Our target is to vaccinate up to 70 million people by the end of this year,” he said of the total adult population eligible for the vaccination out of a 220 million nation.
Pakistan faced initial vaccination hesitancy and a shortage of supplies but it started a mass vaccination campaign late last month.
It has relied heavily on ally China for its vaccine supplies with three out of its six approved does coming from Chinese producers: Sinopharm, SinoVac and CanSinoBio.
Coronavirus infections surged in recent months but have started subsiding. Pakistan has registered a total 936,131 cases and 21,453 deaths.
On Wednesday, 1,118 new infections and 77 deaths were reported.
Pakistan has secured more than 18 million doses in donations and purchases and has also started producing the single dose Chinese CanSinoBio vaccine, with the hope of making 3 million doses a month. read more
The minister appealed to the public to get the shot and help restore normal life and business.
“The more quickly we vaccinate the more quickly we get rid of this pandemic,” he said.