Chinese vaccine expected to arrive in Turkey this week

Chinese vaccine expected to arrive in Turkey this week

Chinese vaccine expected to arrive in Turkey this week

The first batch of 3 million doses of an experimental vaccine against COVID-19 developed by China’s Sinovac is expected to be delivered to Turkey this week.

Turkey has already signed an agreement for the procurement of up to 50 million doses of the Chinese vaccine.

Health Minister Fahrettin Koca told daily Hürriyet in an interview last week that he expected the delivery of the vaccine “in the next couple of days.”

The Chinese injection will arrive in Turkey on Dec. 24 the latest, Muharrem Sarıkaya, a columnist for Turkish daily Habertürk wrote, citing sources.

Turkey’s vaccination drive is likely to start at the end of December or in the first week of January 2021, Koca said in the interview.

The minister also suggested that talks are underway to increase the amount of coronavirus vaccines to be delivered to Turkey and that the country is also looking at alternatives to secure injections.

The vaccination program will not include pregnant women, people under the age of 18 and those who have recovered from the virus within the past six months.

One expert recently estimated that up to 60 million and 65 million people could be vaccinated by the end of June 2021.

Millions of people across the country spent another weekend under full lockdown which the government recently imposed to bring the outbreak under control.

The weekend lockdowns last from 9 p.m. on Fridays until 5 a.m. on Mondays.

Turkey is also implementing weeknight curfews from 9 p.m. until 5 a.m.

The weeknight curfews and weekend lockdowns will remain in place until a further decision from the government.