Taiwan to donate vaccines to Somaliland

The two sides on Monday signed an agreement to deliver the donation, which is to be made as Africa faces a wave of cases of the Omicron variant

Taiwan yesterday announced that it would 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 to combat the pandemic.

The pledge was made after Taiwan Representative Office in the Republic of Somaliland head Wu Chen-chi (吳鎮祺) and Somaliland Minister of Health Hassan Mohamed Ali Gafathi signed an agreement at an event in Somaliand’s capital, Hargeisa, on Monday, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a news release.

The donation is to be made as Africa faces a huge wave of cases of the Omicron variant of SARS-CoV-2, it said.

Photo courtesy of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs via CNA

Health authorities in Somaliland have granted emergency use authorization (EUA) for the Medigen vaccine, it said.

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

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

Medigen’s COVID-19 vaccine is undergoing clinical trials in Paraguay and is to take part in the Solidarity Trial Vaccines platform, an international clinical trial platform launched by the WHO and other groups.

Somaliland declared independence from Somalia in 1991.

It has offices in about a dozen countries, the Web site of the Somaliland Ministry of Foreign Affairs says.

It does not have formal diplomatic ties with any nation.

In February last year, Taiwan and Somaliland signed an agreement to establish reciprocal representative offices.

In October, Taiwan donated a batch of domestically produced oxygen generators to Somaliland.

Previous donations from Taiwan of protective equipment and test kits have proved a lifeline in the de facto independent territory of 3.5 million people.

“Taiwan has contributed more than 90 percent of COVID-19 supplies to Somaliland,” the Republic of Somaliland Representative Office in Taiwan said at the time.

Ali Gafadhi praised the quality of the supplies from Taiwan.

He promised to utilize the contributions to their fullest to combat the virus.

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