Pakistan: Private importers rush for Russian vaccine amid high demand Apr 09, 2021 0 1666 12345 dpa IslamabadPrivate importers in Pakistan are negotiating to procure more of Russia’s Sputnik V vaccine for commercial sale, as customers queue to buy their shots amid frustration with the pace of the free, but slow-moving, government-run inoculation drive.AGP Pharma, a pharmaceutical company based in the southern city of Karachi that imported 50,000 doses of Sputnik V, said on Thursday they were trying to get their hands on more.“Our negotiations are ongoing ... things are in the pipeline and we will know in a couple of days how many more doses we may get,” company’s spokesman Umair Mukhtar told dpa.More importers were seeking the government’s permission to import Russian jabs after a price dispute was resolved, health ministry spokesman Sajid Shah said.Pakistan’s government last week allowed private companies to import vaccines from Russia and China but imposed a price cap on the amount that could be charged to the consumer, around 80 dollars for two doses of Sputnik V. The importers had earlier refused to roll out the vaccine unless they were allowed to set the price higher than the 50-dollar cap the government was demanding.While private distributors have not been able to start purchases from China, a higher demand for that jab has pushed the price beyond 100 dollars at some private hospitals. The 50,000 doses that AGP Pharma earlier imported were over-booked within hours, according to hospitals.More than 700,000 people have been infected so far with more than 15,000 deaths, but an official inoculation drive is moving slow after promised supplies under the global distribution system COVAX were delayed.Pakistan was supposed to get 17 million doses of AstraZeneca vaccines in March, but has not got the supplies so far after a production shortfall and high demand in India.Only 1 million people, mostly health workers and elderly citizens, have been inoculated so far in the country of 216 million. Most of those shots were donated from Pakistan’s ally China. Pages 12 RELATED ARTICLES Crown clash leads to arrest of Mrs World by Sri Lanka police Apr 09, 2021 0 500 Modi concerned as Covid caseload spikes in India Apr 09, 2021 0 385 Turkey denies it snubbed EU chief during Ankara visit Apr 09, 2021 0 414 New Zealand suspends all travel from India after Covid spike Wellington (dpa) - New Zealand will suspend all travel from India after a surge of Covid-19 cases were detected at the border, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced on Thursday. The temporary suspension will begin on .. Protests at airport as Germany deports 20 Afghans to Kabul dpa Kabul/Berlin Twenty Afghan men arrived in the capital Kabul early on Wednesday after being deported from Germany, airport officials said. Their chartered flight landed at 6:40 am (0210 GMT), marking the 38th .. Manila suspends AstraZeneca jab for under 60s dpa Manila The Philippines on Thursday temporarily suspended the use of AstraZeneca’s Covid-19 vaccine for those younger than 60 following reports from abroad of rare blood clots in some recipients. The country’s ..