ISLAMABAD — Pakistan will spend $1.1 billion in the next fiscal year to import COVID-19 vaccines to inoculate most of the 100 million adult population.
This announcement was made by finance minister Shaukat Tareen on Friday while presenting the annual budget for fiscal 2021-22 in the parliament. Pakistan’s fiscal year begins on July 1.
Pakistan, a nation of 220 million, has so far mainly relied on vaccines import from neighboring China. The latest development comes two days after Pakistan said it has administered 10 million vaccine doses amid a decline in COVID-19 cases and deaths from coronavirus.
Tareen also set a target of achieving 4.8 percent GDP growth in the next fiscal year. Pakistan’s economy has been under pressure since last year when it imposed weeks-long nationwide lockdown to contain the spread of coronavirus.
Pakistan has registered a total of 938,737 confirmed cases and 21,576 confirmed deaths.
MORE ON THE PANDEMIC:
— China’s children may be next in line for COVID-19 vaccines
— Leaders of G-7 nations gather to pledge 1B vaccine doses for world
— New federal COVID-19 safety rules exempt most U.S. employers
— EU agency approves Moderna vaccine site in France
— Reports of rising coronavirus cases in Russia
HERE’S WHAT ELSE IS HAPPENING:
TAIPEI, Taiwan — If China is to meet its tentative goal of vaccinating 80% of its population against the coronavirus by the end of the year, tens of millions of children are going to have to start rolling up their sleeves.
Regulators have taken the first steps by approving two domestically produced vaccines for use in children aged 3 to 17, though no date has been set for the shots to start.
Children have been largely spared the worst of the pandemic, becoming infected less easily than adults and generally showing less severe symptoms when they do contract the virus….