World News

Turkey says ready to procure Russia's COVID-19 vaccine if it meets criteria

FILE PHOTO: Turkish Health Minister Fahrettin Koca speaks during a news conference in Ankara, Turkey, January 24, 2020. REUTERS/Cagla Durak

ANKARA (Reuters) - Turkey is ready to procure Russia’s coronavirus vaccine if it meets Ankara’s criteria, Health Minister Fahrettin Koca said on Wednesday, after an earlier report cited him as ruling out buying the Russian vaccine.

The Haberturk news website quoted Koca as saying Turkey had ruled out buying the Russian vaccine, as it did not meet “good laboratory practice” conditions. It did not say which Russian vaccine it was referring to, but Turkey has been conducting Phase III for “Sputnik V”.

Asked about procurements of vaccine at a news conference following a meeting of the government’s science team, Koca said Turkey expected to receive delivery of China’s Sinovac Biotech Ltd in the coming days, adding that it was in talks to procure other vaccines if needed, too.

Reporting by Tuvan Gumrukcu and Ece Toksabay