South Korea to receive more Moderna COVID vaccines to boost vaccination efforts
SEOUL, Aug.22 (Reuters) – South Korea’s health ministry announced on Sunday that Moderna Inc will provide the country with 7.01 million doses of coronavirus vaccine by the first week of September, following a request from the government to expedite delivery.
Some 1.01 million doses are expected to arrive on Monday, the ministry said, with another 6 million to be delivered sequentially.
Moderna delivered 1.3 million doses earlier this month. It informed South Korea at the time that it would only be able to deliver less than half of the 8.5 million doses it was due to ship in August.
“In response to our request to speed up and expand vaccine supply, Moderna has informed us that it will deliver 7.01 million doses by the first week of September,” the ministry said in a statement. .
As part of the plan, the country will be able to give 36 million people at least one dose of the vaccine before the Chuseok holiday from September 20 to 22.
The statement also said the government is currently in talks with Romania for a vaccine exchange deal, but denied a local media report that the Romanian government had approved the donation of 450,000 doses of Moderna vaccine.
He gave no details on the planned exchange, adding that more information on the discussion with Romania will be provided as soon as it is finalized.
South Korea reported 1,628 new cases of the coronavirus on Saturday, bringing the total to 236,366. A total of 2,215 people have died so far.
By midnight as of Saturday, 50.4% of the 52 million residents had received at least one dose of the vaccine, while only 22.5% were fully immunized, according to government data.
South Korea aims to vaccinate more than 70% of the population by September. (Reporting by Joori Roh; Editing by Emelia Sithole-Matarise)