Laos receives 300,000 vaccine doses from China - reports

FILE PHOTO: A sign of Sinopharm is seen at the 2020 China International Fair for Trade in Services (CIFTIS), following the COVID-19 outbreak, in Beijing, China September 5, 2020. REUTERS/Tingshu Wang/File Photo

BANGKOK (Reuters) - Laos on Monday received 300,000 doses of a COVID-19 vaccine produced by Chinese pharmaceutical giant Sinopharm, media in the two countries reported.

The Southeast Asian country has already started to inoculate 600 frontline medical workers, the English-language Laotian Times reported, adding that the country had previously received 2,000 doses from China and also Russia’s Sputnik V vaccine.

“These vaccines will be provided to medical workers and at-risk frontline workers in Laos,” health minister Bounkong Syhavong was quoted a saying in the paper.

State-media China Radio International also reported the arrival of the 300,000 doses.

The delivery comes a day after Beijing sent Cambodia 600,000 Sinopharm doses.

With a population of just over seven million people, landlocked Laos has reported only 45 cases of the coronavirus and no fatalities.

International organisations last year praised Laos’ early response and countrywide networks for containing the coronavirus after the country declared itself virus free in June.

Reporting by Chayut Setboonsarng; Editing by Ed Davies