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Two Million More Vaccine Doses Arrive in Kingdom

PHNOM PENH: Two million of the three million doses of Sinovac promised by Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi in September, landed at Phnom Penh International Airport on Thursday morning. They were welcomed by Health Ministry Secretary of State, Youk Sambath. They come at a critical point in Cambodia’s vaccination rollout, as herd immunity approaches along with a full reopening of the economy.

The flight from China landed mid-morning on Thursday with some very welcome cargo. Two million doses of Sinovac, gifted by China, with a further million expected to be delivered later this month. Secretary of State in the Ministry of Health, Youk Sambath, says the doses will be used to complete the vaccination campaign for children, while also allowing the government to ramp up its booster shot campaign, which is already underway in 11 of Phnom Penh’s 14 districts.

The sheer success of Cambodia’s vaccination campaign is clear for all to see. Shared by the Ministry of Health, the FT Vaccine tracker shows Cambodia as one of the leading countries of the world for Covid-19 vaccination, even ahead of developed countries such as the UK, France and Japan. When it comes to fully-vaccinated citizens and residents, the Kingdom currently ranks 16 in the world.

But while the vaccinations have been reaching everyone in the country, not everyone is coming to get their vaccination cards. According to Vaccination Campaign chief of operations, General Ith Sarath, 10,000 vaccination cards are lying in wait for their owners at various vaccination centers across Phnom Penh. He is urging everyone to please come forward and collect them, with vaccination cards now mandatory for entry to business locations, banks, shops, markets and restaurants in the capital.

Ith Sarath says the Defence Ministry is putting various encouragement strategies in place to ensure those vaccination cards are collected. These include posting names and phone numbers on the Defence Ministry’s Facebook page and sending text messages to those concerned.

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