Delays in deliveries of Russia's Sputnik V shot to be resolved this month -RDIF

A medical specialist holds a vial of Sputnik V vaccine against the coronavirus in a department store in Moscow, Russia
A medical specialist holds a vial of Sputnik V vaccine against the coronavirus in a department store in Moscow, Russia, January 18, 2021 REUTERS/Shamil Zhumatov/File Photo

MOSCOW, Aug 4 (Reuters) - Delays in international deliveries of the second dose of Russia's Sputnik V vaccine will be fully resolved this month, the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF), responsible for the shot's marketing abroad, said in a statement on Wednesday.

The Russian vaccine uses two doses made of different components and administered 21 days apart. Several countries that have begun receiving shipments have complained in recent weeks about delays in the delivery of batches of second doses.

"Sputnik V team confirms that owing to a major scale-up in vaccine production capacity, temporary second component delivery delays that occurred due to this production scale-up will be fully restored in August," the statement said.

RDIF has struck manufacturing partnerships abroad with producers in 14 countries, the statement said, and will further increase its capacity next month due to a partnership with India's Serum Institute.

"Sputnik V will accelerate work with other vaccine producers on the mix-and-match approach," it added. Initial small-scale trials of a vaccine shot mixing a dose of Sputnik V with a dose of a shot produced by AstraZeneca (AZN.L) are ongoing and recently reported good results, RDIF said.

Reuters has previously reported that some manufacturers of the Sputnik V shot have found the second dose easier to produce than the first.

Argentina, among the first countries to widely use the two-dose Sputnik V, ratcheted up pressure on Moscow last month over delays in the arrival of second doses that are holding back the South American nation's inoculation campaign.

"At this point the entire contract is at risk of being publicly cancelled," the government wrote in a letter in July. read more

Also in July, an Indian distributor of the shot said India's full rollout of the vaccine will have to be put on hold until producers provide equal quantities of both doses.

Writing by Polina Ivanova; Editing by David Gregorio

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