Coronavirus: Indonesia begins testing Chinese vaccine

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JAKARTA | Indonesia began testing on 1,600 volunteers the Chinese candidate vaccine against the coronavirus developed by the Sinovac Biotech laboratory.

Called Coronavac, it is one of the few vaccines to be in phase III, the last stage of clinical trials before approval.

This vaccine is already being tested with 9,000 volunteers in Brazil, the second country most affected in the world by the coronavirus pandemic, after the United States.

Indonesia, which is the fourth most populous country on the planet, faces an increase in the number of cases of COVID-19 which has already infected more than 127,000 people and killed more than 5,700.

The scale of the epidemic could be much greater, however, as the screening rate is low in this Southeast Asian country.

The governor of West Java, Indonesia’s most populous province, is among some 1,620 people scheduled to take part in clinical trials scheduled to last until February.

If, at the end of these tests, the vaccine proves to be safe and effective, the Indonesian authorities have planned to produce up to 250,000 million doses for this vast archipelago of nearly 270 million inhabitants.

On Tuesday, Indonesian President Joko Widodo visited a factory in Bandung city, located in central Java, run by state-owned pharmaceutical company Bio Farma, where vaccine production is expected to be produced. start.

“Once again, I want to stress that the threat of COVID-19 will not end until all Indonesians are vaccinated,” Widodo said, before starting his visit.

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