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China upset over disclosure of its vaccine price in Bangladesh

Bangladesh Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen has said China is a little upset that the procurement price of Sinopharm vaccine was made public in Bangladesh, The Daily Star reported

Jun 05, 2021
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China upset, over disclosure, of its vaccine price, in Bangladesh

Bangladesh Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen has said China is a little upset that the procurement price of Sinopharm vaccine was made public in Bangladesh, The Daily Star reported.

"We express sorrow to the Chinese ambassador for the incident," the foreign minister said while giving an interview on private television Channel24 yesterday.

Bangladesh's position has deteriorated to a large extent due to the incident, he said.

China and Bangladesh signed an agreement that contained a no-disclosure clause about the procurement price.

Momen said the government will not be able to purchase the vaccine at the same price in the future.

"We have to purchase vaccines at the price they sell to other countries," the minister said, adding that the price could be double or triple.

On May 27, the cabinet meeting approved the proposal of procuring 15 million doses of the Sinopharm vaccine from China. An official later told journalists that the government is going to procure each dose at USD 10.

After the news was published on different media outlets, an official said the price has not been approved yet.

Later, Professor Abul Bashar Mohammad Khurshid Alam, director-general of Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS), said they have sent a letter to the Chinese Embassy where they expressed regret over the matter.

Prof Khurshid told Channel24, "We did not disclose the price of the vaccine willingly. But, it was somehow disclosed. We have sent them a letter. They are yet to give any reaction."

The DG said China has sold each dose of vaccine to Sri Lanka for USD 14 and to Indonesia for USD 17.

After learning of the price Sinopharm charged Bangladesh, those countries put pressure on China to sell the vaccines at the same rate, added the DG.

(SAM)

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