Taiwan says 240,000 COVID-19 Moderna doses to arrive on Friday

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A vial containing doses of the Moderna vaccine against the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) and empty syringes are seen at a vaccination centre in Ronda, Spain June 9, 2021. REUTERS/Jon Nazca

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TAIPEI, June 18 (Reuters) - A further 240,000 COVID-19 vaccine doses from Moderna Inc (MRNA.O) will arrive in Taiwan on Friday afternoon, Deputy Minister of the Interior Chen Tsung-yen said, boosting the island’s slow vaccination programme.

Only around 5% of Taiwan's 23.5 million people have received at least one shot so far, with orders delayed by global shortages as the island deals with a spike in domestic infections.

Taiwan has already received and has started administering 150,000 Moderna shots, and has around 5 million on order.

Half of Taiwan’s 20 million dose order is with AstraZeneca Plc (AZN.L) which have been slow to arrive, but this month the island received an additional 1.24 million AstraZeneca doses donated by Japan.

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Reporting by Ben Blanchard and Yimou Lee; Editing by Muralikumar Anantharaman

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