Saturday, February 27, 2021

Featured News

India’s Vaccine Diplomacy Frustrates China; Beijing Accuses New Delhi Of Halting Sinovac Deal With Bangladesh

India’s vaccine diplomacy has upset China with the latter accusing New Delhi of “meddling” in its Sinovac deal with Bangladesh. 

Now, Arunachal Students To Launch Statewide Protest Against Chinese Village In ‘Their Territory’

On Monday, Bangladesh received the first consignment of the 5 million doses of Covishield vaccines from India. Last week, New Delhi had gifted 2 million doses of the vaccine to Dhaka as part of the Modi government’s ‘Vaccine Maitri’ (vaccine friendship) initiative.

Reports suggest Bangladesh has so far purchased 30 million doses from the Pune-based Serum Institute of India through private Beximco pharmaceuticals under a tripartite agreement.

The country’s health minister Zahid Maleque had said earlier that Bangladesh is expected to get 50 lakh vaccines every month from India in the coming months. These developments have irked China, which is now engaged in, what many see, as “smear campaigns” against India.

Earlier Bangladesh was supposed to undertake clinical trials of the Chinese-made Sinovac in July-August 2020. Dhaka did not need to share the cost of clinical trials back then, but later the trials were delayed till October.

Chinese state-owned Global Times has reported that as per the sources, “the clinical trials were delayed until October due to the Indian government allegedly meddling in the two sides’ cooperation during the period”.

Indian media reports suggest that Bangladesh turned to India for help as Chinese vaccine producer Sinovac asked Dhaka to share the cost of clinical trials. Global Times clarified by saying Sinovac had begun clinical trials in some other countries, such as Brazil and Turkey as of October.

The report says it could not find external financial support for the clinical trials in Bangladesh; hence the company had to negotiate with the Bangladeshi government about sharing the cost to launch the clinical trials.

The Global Times report mentions the company had promised to provide free vaccines to Bangladesh as compensation but was refused. Now, Chinese experts have started accusing India of “smearing China’s cooperation with countries in South Asia”, and attempting to “monopolize the vaccine market in South Asia”.

The Chinese state media has itself come out with several reports allegedly discrediting India’s effort to supply Covid-19 vaccines to several countries including its neighbors. Analysts say Beijing has difficulty accepting that India, which had begun producing vaccines much later than China, has now earned the tag of the world’s largest vaccine maker.

The state-owned media boasts how the Chinese vaccine has been hailed by the Turkish President Recep Erdogan, Seychelles President Ram Karawang, Jordanian Prime Minister Khasawneh, Indonesian President Joko Widodo, and Bahrain Crown Prince and Prime Minister Salman.

While China aims for a geopolitical edge with its coronavirus vaccines, its campaign has not been very smooth so far. Brazil and Turkey have complained of the slow shipment of doses. Questions have also been raised over the effectiveness of the Chinese vaccine.

Lawmakers in the Philippines have criticized the government’s decision to purchase the Chinese vaccine. Similarly, a former official at Singapore’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs has said: “Right now, I would not take any Chinese vaccine because there’s insufficient data.”

He said he would consider it only with “a proper report.”

About 24 countries, mostly low and middle-income groups, have signed deals with Chinese companies because most of the doses by Pfizer and Moderna have been claimed by the richer nations.

In comparison, India has begun supplying its vaccines to as many as 12 countries in the past few days and more countries are likely to sign deals for the same in the coming days. Reports suggest India has been approached by 92 countries for Covid-19 vaccines.

Author’s Profile

Follow EurAsian Times on Google

Featured News

Five Key Reasons Why Pakistan Continues To Be On FATF ‘Grey List’

The Financial Action Task Force (FATF) has decided to keep Pakistan on the “grey list” till June for failing to act on six key...

How Alert Netizens Deciphered NASA’s Secret Message On Mars Rover Parachute

US space agency NASA’s secret message on the parachute of its Perseverance rover was decoded by 'internet sleuths' within hours of its landing on...

India’s Defense Space Agency Hunting For New Technology That Can Track Enemy Assets

India’s Defence Space Agency (DSA) is looking for technology to deal with threats in and from space, according to reports. The DSA was formed...

Biden Will Hit Saudi Arabia Where It Hurts The Most With A CIA Report On Khashoggi Murder

If putting a halt to a weapons deal with Saudi Arabia were not enough, the Biden administration is now set to hit Riyadh where...

Chinook vs Stallion: Why Did Israel Overlook Boeing’s CH-47 Chinook For Lockheed’s CH-53K King Stallion Helicopter?

Putting all speculation to rest, Israel's Defense Ministry has finally picked the Lockheed Martin CH-53K 'King Stallion' heavy-lift helicopter for the country's military. It...