Cabinet approves $150m, sets criteria to procure Covid vaccine

ISLAMABAD: The federal cabinet has approved $150 million grant for the procurement of Covid-19 vaccine, besides setting the criteria for the same.

This was announced by Prime Minister’s Special Assistant on National Health Dr Faisal Sultan while giving details about decisions taken by the federal cabinet that met on Tuesday.

Dr Faisal said the criteria that has been set for the procurement of the coronavirus vaccine included efficacy, level of safety and cold chain requirements. “We will tap several options for the purchase of vaccines and also consider the production capacity of the firm to ensure smooth supply in the country.”

For this purpose, the SAPM said, a few pharmaceutical companies have already been shortlisted and contacted.

He said in the first phase [of providing the vaccine], the government’s priority will be healthcare workers and elderly people, as they are most vulnerable to the virus. He added that the health ministry will request the federal government to provide more funds for the vaccine if required.

On Ravi River Project in Lahore and Bundal Island project in Karachi, Minister for Information and Broadcasting Shibli Faraz said that the projects would invite foreign investment, besides creating job opportunities for local people.

The Bundal Island project will attract $60 billion investment and will benefit the people of the Sindh, he said, while assuring the project stakeholders that the federal government has no plans to shift the project to Islamabad.

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