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Russia to produce COVID-19 vaccines in S. Korea

Posted October. 21, 2020 08:13,   

Updated October. 21, 2020 08:13


Russia has confirmed that it will produce “Sputnik V,” a coronavirus vaccine developed by Russia, in South Korea. It also said it would reveal the results of a phase three trial as early as in November.

According to TASS, Kirill Dmitriev, the CEO of the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF), said in an online seminar on Monday that vaccines will be able to be mass produced in December and they will be made in five countries including South Korea, China, India and Brazil. He also said in an interview last month that negotiations about the production of Sputnik V in South Korea had entered the final stage.

Denis Logunov, vice chief at the Gamaleya National Center of Epidemiology and Microbiology, a research institute behind the development of the vaccine, said the results of a phase three trial which involves from 5,000 up to 10,000 participants will be made public as early as next month.

The vaccine has been named after the Soviet satellite that was sent into orbit in 1957 when it approved the vaccine in August. However, it faced criticism that phase three trials, which is necessary to prove its safety, had not been conducted and the phase two trial was not up to the standard of advanced nations. Some medical experts in the Western countries said it was worse than water.

In response to the controversy, Russia started providing the vaccine for public servants who come in contact with many people for their jobs such as teachers and healthcare workers. Although it planned to conduct the phase three trial that involves about 40,000, only 16,000 have been vaccinated as there are not enough volunteers.

Russia said it would export the vaccine to Latin American countries first including Argentina, Peru and Mexico.

Youn-Jong Kim zozo@donga.com