Iran has joined the World Health Organisation’s COVAX initiative for the equitable global distribution of prospective COVID-19 vaccines.
The Director-General of Drugs and Controlled Substances of Iran’s Ministry of Health Heidar Mohammadi made this known on Monday.
The Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA) quotes Mohammadi as saying that Tehran has signed the necessary paperwork to be part of the global vaccine drive.
Iran joins more than 170 nations and entities as part of the network aimed at fairly delivering some two billion vaccines worldwide by the end of 2021.
IRNA also cited Iranian Minister of Health Saeed Namaki as saying that the country was also working on developing its own vaccine against the virus.
Iran’s vaccine candidate is now in the animal testing phase and is set to move to phase one human trial in the near future, the agency reported.
China announced it was joining the initiative earlier this month, which puts it in the running with most other major world economies.
The U.S. and Russia have so far refrained from joining the programme. (dpa/NAN)