Mexico’s government announced on Saturday that it paid about 160 million dollars in advance to the World Health Organization (WHO) to secure 51 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine from the COVAX initiative.
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"With this payment, Mexico ensures having options to acquire doses of a successful vaccine against COVID-19 within the Covax portfolio", Mexico’s Foreign Ministry said.
Mexico officially joined COVAX in September, as part of the international efforts to find a drug to tackle the virus. The Central American nation also signed agreements with UK’s AstraZeneca and Oxford University to produce their vaccines, which currently are in the clinical trial phase.
Mexico’s president, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, has often pledged that under his administration, the nation could start a massive vaccination in the first quarter of 2021.
The agreement would cover the immunization of about 20 percent of Mexico's population in a two-dose vaccination regimen, which would require 573, 200 dosages.
"The modality of the optional purchase contract signed by Mexico allows the nation to choose the vaccine to acquire, according to its preferences and the availability of subjects. The Covax Facility has a portfolio of nine possible vaccines that it will make available", the Foreign Ministry added.
As of Saturday, Mexico reported 809,751 COVID-19 cases, 83,507 deaths, and 588,085 recoveries from the virus.