China not happy with Nepal’s procurement price of Sinopharm vaccine

China is not happy with Nepal after some media publications revealed the procurement price of its Sinopharm vaccine. Many officials have confirmed that the country has communicated its displeasure to Nepal’s agencies.

The procurement price of the vaccine amounts to around $10 per dose Nepal plans to purchase from China to fight the second wave of COVID-19.

Reportedly, four million Sinopharm vaccine doses would be bought by Nepal under a non-disclosure agreement. It was proposed by Sinopharm, to keep the details such as the price and delivery date under wraps.

According to The Kathmandu Post, the price of the Sinopharm vaccine that will be supplied to the Himalayan Nation as confirmed by two ministers and two government secretaries present at Monday’s cabinet decided to procure four million vaccine doses from Sinopharm. In addition, the price was not fixed yet, given the nature of the government. But, as per the officials, the price of per dose could be $10.

Dr. Krishna Prasad Paudel, spokesperson for the Health Ministry said to the Post, “The way the media quoted the price of the vaccine and other logistical issues were concerning because these are very sensitive issues.”

On the report of the Post, Sinopharm had communicated its displeasure at the vaccine procurement’s publicization by the government of Nepal.

“There was quite a lot of interest in the media before an agreement could be reached, which worried us. We were worried if we could get the vaccine or not”, the spokesperson added.

On Thursday, the Health Ministry released a statement debunking media reports about purchasing vaccines from China. It said that no deal had been reached yet but blamed the media for circulating information on vaccine procurement from China.

It stated, “The government of Nepal has requested the government of the People’s Republic of China to give preference to Nepal on vaccine cooperation. The process to secure vaccines from different countries including China is still ongoing.”

Dr. Samir Kumar Adhikari who is the joint spokesperson for the Ministry signed the statement and told the Post that the issued statement was in English since the news was mainly reported by the English media. He declined to elaborate.

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