A man receives a dose of Chinese-made COVID-19 vaccine at Port Moresby General Hospital in Port Moresby of Papua New Guinea (PNG), July 13, 2021. Papua New Guinea (PNG) announced a rollout of the Chinese-made Sinopharm vaccine on Tuesday in a further effort to contain the spread of COVID-19 in the Pacific island country. (Chinese Ambassy to Papua New Guinea/Handout via Xinhua)
SYDNEY, July 13 (Xinhua) -- Papua New Guinea (PNG) announced a rollout of the Chinese-made Sinopharm vaccine on Tuesday in a further effort to contain the spread of COVID-19 in the Pacific island country.
A ceremony was held at Port Moresby General Hospital in the capital city of Port Moresby. The event was attended by Chinese Ambassador to PNG Zeng Fanhua, PNG Health Minister Jetta Wong, Forestry Minister Walter Schnaubelt, Deputy National Pandemic Response Controller Dr. Daoni Esorom and Port Moresby General Hospital CEO Dr. Paki Molumi, as well as representatives from the World Health Organization. Schnaubelt received a vaccine jab on site.
The announcement came after donations of the Sinopharm vaccines arrived in PNG in late June.
Zeng said vaccination is the key to defeating the pandemic. China has provided more than 500 million vaccine doses to over 100 countries globally.
According to China's National Health Commission, there have been more than 1.38 billion doses administered in China so far, which Zeng said testifies to their safety and effectiveness.
He added that the China-donated vaccines would help PNG protect its people's health and safety. China will also continue to work with PNG to strengthen health exchanges and help PNG cope with the pandemic.
Wong thanked the Chinese government for donating the vaccines. He said the fact that Chinese vaccines have been approved by the WHO for emergency use and are provided to participants of the COVAX project illustrates their safe use.
He called on PNG residents to get vaccinated, saying the more people get vaccinated the earlier they could be protected from the virus.
Dr. Esorom said a national rollout of the Chinese vaccines will help PNG better control the pandemic and prepare for a possible new outbreak.
According to the latest statistics released by the PNG government as of July 9, the total number of COVID-19 cases in the country reached 17,340 with 179 deaths. Enditem