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Thailand OKs ฿1 Billion for Covid-19 Vaccine, Then Delays Human Trials for Months

Thailand researchers testing coronavirus vaccine

A day after approving a billion baht for development and manufacturing of its own Covid-19 vaccine Thailand postponed for months human trials set to begin in October.

Kiart Rakrungtham, director of the Covid-19 Vaccine Development Project at Chulalongkorn University’s Vaccine Research Centre, said Thailand would wait for production of vaccine candidates before it starts the first phase of human trials

He noted that production capacities at factories worldwide already are overwhelmed by orders of dozens of candidate coronavirus vaccines.

The announcement came after the Cabinet on Tuesday endorsed a budget of a billion baht for the vaccine project.

Deputy Health Minister Sathit Pitutecha said 600 million baht was earmarked for joint production of the coronavirus vaccine being developed by researchers at Oxford University in the United Kingdom.

Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul said the other 400 million baht was for Chulalongkorn’s research and development.

Anutin said Thailand is on the right track to go ahead with plans for local production, transfer of technology from overseas and purchasing foreign-made vaccines.

Globally, seven candidate vaccines are currently in the process of human trials. One of them is likely to succeed by the beginning of next year, he predicted.