Nepal sends requests to countries seeking early availability of Covid-19 vaccines

The Nepali government has sent requests to a number of the countries that are producing COVID-19 vaccines seeking early availability of vaccines when they are proved effective, Nepali officials said, reports Xinhua.

Such requests were made after the Nepali government introduced an ordinance last week, paving the way for bringing the COVID-19 vaccines for emergency use.

“We have sent requests to the countries including China, India, the United States, Britain, Russia and Australia for early availability of vaccines,” Jage­shwor Gautam, spokesperson at the Ministry of Health and Population told Xinhua on Saturday evening. “The letters were sent through our foreign ministry.”

According to him, these countries were chosen for requests as COVID-19 vaccines as a number of companies and institutions from these 

countries are developing vaccines against COVID-19. “It has been three days that we sent the requests,” Gautam said.

Sewa Lamsal, spokesperson at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs confirmed to Xinhua that such requests were made to a number of countries. 

By introducing an ordinance, the Nepali government has authorized the Department of Drug Administration, the regular of the pharmaceutical sector, to register the vaccines of infectious diseases that have been declared as an epidemic or pandemic.

The department has also been authorized to make necessary recommendations to provide import licenses to the firms or institutions to import vaccines as per the ordinance.

The Nepali government has also formed a high-level committee represented by secretaries of finance, home and foreign affairs ministries to facilitate the early import of the vaccines.

As of Saturday, the Nepali government reported a total of 218,639 cases with 1,305 deaths, according to Nepal’s Ministry of Health and Population.