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China Approves Sinopharm Vaccine

China has approved a SARS-CoV-2 vaccine developed by the state-owned company Sinopharm, NPR reports.

It adds that the vaccine from Sinopharm subsidiary China National Biotec Group, or CNBG, relies on an inactivated coronavirus to spur the production of antibodies and, according to the company, has a 79 percent efficacy rate. A trial conducted in the United Arab Emirates previously suggested the Sinopharm vaccine had an 86 percent efficacy rate, a finding that led the UAE to officially register the vaccine.

NPR reports that the approval is conditional and requires Sinopharm to continue to collect data on the vaccine, which is given in a two-dose regimen. The Guardian adds that China hopes to reach between 60 percent and 70 percent immunization coverage, noting that about a million people have already received the Sinopharm vaccine under emergency approvals. "As the Chinese vaccine is proved to be safe and effective, we would like to encourage our people to participate on a voluntary and informed basis, and with consent," said Zeng Yixin, deputy head of the national health commission, according to the Guardian.