The government today approved a proposal in principle to procure SARS COV 2 (COVID-19) vaccines from Sinopharm of China under the Direct Procurement Method (DPM) in order to meet the growing demand of vaccines in the country.
The approval came from the 15th meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs in this year held virtually today with Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal in the chair.
Briefing reporters after the meeting virtually, Cabinet Division Additional Secretary Dr Sahida Akhter said that the proposal was given approval considering protection of public health, reducing COVID-19 infection rate on emergency state purpose.
Answering to a question, the Finance Minister said had the Ministry of Health brought this proposal much earlier, the government could have avoided the DPM method and thus could have saved money.
“But, the COVID-19 is now continuing its havoc across the globe while new variants are coming every now and then. This procurement proposal of vaccines has been given approval in order to save lives of people and also to render health services,” Kamal said, adding that the Ministry of Finance has urged all to maintain austerity during this difficult time of the pandemic.
Meanwhile, Sahida said the day’s meeting also approved a proposal in principle from the Health Services Division to procure some 40 oxygen generators under DPM method for the CMSD for the use of COVID-19 infected patients.
Besides, the meeting approved another proposal in principle from the Ministry of Industries for signing agreements for procuring some 12.80 lakh metric tons of urea fertilizer by the BCIC to maintain the necessary supply of urea fertilizer throughout the next fiscal year (FY22) under different state-level agreements.
Out of the 12.80 lakh metric tons of fertilizer, some 5 lakh metric tons will be procured from Muntajat, Qatar, some 5 lakh metric tons will be procured from Saudi Arabia, and some 2.80 lakh metric tons from UAE.