Chinese vaccine draws demand across Latin America, say Brazilian officials
China Daily

Brazil's Sao Paulo state governor Joao Doria and director of Instituto Butantan Dimas Tadeu Covas hold a box of the China's CoronaVac vaccine near a refrigerated container with vaccines against the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), as it arrives at Sao Paulo International Airport in Guarulhos, Brazil Nov 19, 2020. (Photo: Agencies)

SAO PAULO - Doses of a COVID-19 vaccine made by China's Sinovac Biotech are rolling off a Brazilian production line.

Sao Paulo Governor Joao Doria said at a news conference on Thursday that the state's biomedical center, the Butantan Institute, aims to fill and finish 1 million doses per day on its production line for a vaccination campaign to start Jan 25.

Doria said 11 Brazilian states have contacted Butantan seeking the doses of the vaccine, called CoronaVac.

At the same news conference, Butantan head Dimas Covas said several countries in the region, including Peru, Uruguay, Paraguay and Honduras are interested in buying the CoronaVac vaccine from Brazil. Butantan is in advanced talks with Argentina to the supply vaccine, he said.

Dimas said CoronaVac doses would cost $10.30 to Brazilian states and cities outside of Sao Paulo.

Butantan has begun to build a facility where it plans to produce the vaccine from scratch as of September 2021 instead of receiving it in bulk from China to fill and label vials.

Brazil has the world's second-deadliest outbreak of the novel coronavirus after the United States, with more than 178,000 deaths. The continent-sized country, with a population of 212 million, has registered 6.7 million confirmed cases.

On Thursday, health regulator Anvisa set out rules for companies to apply for emergency use authorizations for COVID-19 vaccines, an option that had not previously existed.