Russia offers Sputnik V jabs for $9.95 each | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, May 08, 2021 / LAST MODIFIED: 04:58 AM, May 08, 2021

Russia offers Sputnik V jabs for $9.95 each

Dhaka seeks price cut thru’ negotiation

Russia has offered Bangladesh the Sputnik V vaccine at a rate of $9.95 for each dose.

Although  a procurement agreement is yet to be signed between the two countries,  the Bangladesh government wrote to the Russian authority asking them to  reduce the price as it seemed to be high, said officials.

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The  Russian government sent a proposal early last week. After analysing the  proposal, the Bangladesh government replied saying the price should be  negotiated further.

"We have proposed for price negotiations. But  the price of the double dose of Sputnik V is less than the single dose  of Pfizer and Moderna vaccines," a top health ministry official told The  Daily Star yesterday.

The Bangladesh government also proposed  that the Russian authority will have to take the responsibility if it  fails to supply the vaccine in due time.

There is a gap between  administrations of the two shots and that is why the supply of the  second dose should reach Bangladesh on time, the official said.

The proposal also mentioned that 50 percent of the price of the vaccine should be paid in advance, said the official.

Earlier,  Health Minister Zahid Maleque told The Daily Star that they got the  agreement document from the foreign ministry on Monday.

Sputnik V has been priced at about $10 per shot in other countries, according to media reports.

"We are trying to sign the agreement at the earliest," the minister said.

The government also approved in principle the local coproduction of Russia's Sputnik V involving Bangladeshi drug makers.

On April 27, the government authorised emergency use of Sputnik V in the country.

Bangladesh's  mass inoculation programme suffered serious setbacks after the Indian  government restricted the export of Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine produced  by the Serum Institute of India.

Due to vaccine shortage, the government suspended administering the first doses from April 26.

However,  the emergency use authorisation of Sputnik V means there is no bar to  importing and administering that vaccine. Health officials said they can  resume the first dose of vaccination once the Russian vaccine  arrives.

Sputnik V is the second vaccine the Directorate General  of Drug Administration (DGDA) approved after giving the go ahead to  Covishield, the AstraZeneca vaccine, on January 4.

The Russian vaccine has been registered in around 60 countries and is currently in use in some of those countries.

Russia  approved the Sputnik V vaccine for domestic use in August last year.  The country claimed that its efficacy is around 91 percent.


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