Mozambique to receive extra 1.7 million COVID-19 vaccines by May

MAPUTO, March 11 (Reuters) - Mozambique expects to receive 1.7 million more doses of COVID-19 vaccines by May from various bilateral sources, its prime minister said on Thursday.

Mozambique kicked off its COVID-19 vaccination program on Monday after receiving a donation of 200,000 doses from the China National Pharmaceutical Group (Sinopharm) last month.

The government aims to inoculate around 60,000 health workers in the country of about 30 million, nearly half of which are adults. It wants to vaccinate 16 million people by 2022. So far, 15,000 people have been vaccinated.

“Our country will receive, by May of the current year 2021, over 1.7 million doses of vaccines within the scope of bilateral and multilateral cooperation mechanisms,” Prime Minister Carlos Agostinho do Rosario told lawmakers.

The low-income southern African nation on Monday received 100,000 shots from India as a donation, as well as 384,000 vaccines from the distribution program COVAX, co-led by the World Health Organization.

Mozambique has recorded nearly 63,645 coronavirus infections with 711 deaths. (Reporting by Manuel Mucari; editing by Mfuneko Toyana and David Gregorio)