S'pore sends 500,000 Pfizer vaccine doses to Australia, who will return same amount in December

Singapore has made good progress in its national vaccination programme.

Sulaiman Daud | August 31, 2021, 12:15 PM

Singapore announced a Covid-19 vaccine dose sharing arrangement with Australia, as Australia battles a surge in cases caused by the Delta variant.

According to a statement from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) on Aug. 31, Singapore will provide 500,000 doses of its existing stock of Pfizer-BioNTech, mRNA-based vaccines to Australia.

This is because Singapore has made "good progress" in the national vaccination programme, and has sufficient supplies to meet immediate needs.

On Aug. 29, Health Minister Ong Ye Kung announced that Singapore had reached a new milestone, with over 80 per cent of its population having received two doses of a Covid-19 vaccine.

Australia battling surge caused by Delta variant

With Singapore's vaccines, Australia can accelerate its vaccination programme, amidst the current surge.

It reported a new national record of 1,375 cases in a day on Aug. 30, with most coming from the state of New South Wales.

Just over 33 per cent of Australians aged 16 and older have received two doses of the Covid-19 vaccine.

MFA added:

"This dose sharing arrangement is yet another example of the enduring Comprehensive Strategic Partnership between Singapore and Australia. Throughout the pandemic, both countries have been sharing best practices in our respective efforts to combat Covid-19, and have been working together to keep markets open and supply chains functioning globally.

Singapore is also grateful to Pfizer and BioNTech for assisting to facilitate the dose sharing arrangement."

Booster shots down the line

In return, Australia will provide the same quantity of vaccines back to Singapore at a later date, after Singapore has drawn down on its existing supplies.

MFA added, "These returned doses would come in more useful for Singapore then, potentially as booster doses for specific segments of our population that could benefit from such boosting."

Ong said back in July that fully vaccinated individuals may require a third booster shot, potentially beginning in February 2022.

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong also shared the news on his Facebook page, which you can see below:

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Top image from PM Lee's Facebook page.