CORONAVIRUS/Taiwan to donate domestic COVID-19 vaccines to Somaliland

12/28/2021 12:18 PM
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Head of the Taiwan Representative Office in the Republic of Somaliland Wu Chen-chi (吳鎮祺, right) and Somaliland Health Minister Hassan Mohamed Ali Gafadhi Photo courtesy of MOFA
Head of the Taiwan Representative Office in the Republic of Somaliland Wu Chen-chi (吳鎮祺, right) and Somaliland Health Minister Hassan Mohamed Ali Gafadhi Photo courtesy of MOFA

Taipei, Dec. 28 (CNA) Taiwan announced Tuesday that it will donate 150,000 doses of the domestically developed Medigen COVID-19 vaccine to Somaliland, as part of its continued assistance to the self-governing East African state in combating the pandemic.

The pledge was made after both sides signed an agreement on the vaccine donation on Monday in Somaliland, according to a Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) press release.

MOFA said the donation is to be made as Africa faces a huge wave of Omicron variant COVID-19 cases.

According to MOFA, the health authorities in Somaliland have recently granted emergency use authorization (EUA) to the Medigen vaccine.

Medigen is the only domestically developed COVID-19 vaccine that has received EUA from Taiwan's Food and Drug Administration, and its rollout in Taiwan began on Aug. 23.

So far, no other country has granted EUA to Medigen.

Medigen's COVID-19 vaccine is currently undergoing clinical trials in Paraguay, and has also been chosen to take part in the Solidarity Trial Vaccines platform, an international clinical trial platform co-launched by the World Health Organization.

Somaliland declared independence from Somalia in 1991 after years of conflict. It has offices in about a dozen countries, according to its foreign ministry's website, but does not have formal diplomatic relations with any nation.

In February 2020, Taiwan and Somaliland signed an agreement to establish reciprocal representative offices. Taipei opened its office in Somaliland on Aug. 17 that year, while Somaliland opened its office in Taipei the following month on Sept. 9.

(By Joseph Yeh)

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