BUDAPEST, Hungary — Hungary has issued initial approval to two more COVID-19 vaccines from outside the European Union's common procurement program, officials said Monday, further expanding the national supply of jabs that has given the country one of the highest vaccination rates in the 27-member bloc.
The Hungarian medicines regulator gave emergency approval to Convidecia, a vaccine produced by Chinese company CanSino Biologics, and to India's Covishield vaccine, Chief Medical Officer Cecilia Muller announced at an online press briefing. The actions brings the number of vaccines authorized in Hungary to seven; shots developed by Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, Oxford-AstraZeneca and China's Sinopharm, as well as Russia’s Sputnik V vaccine, are already in use.
“We are confident that with this increase in the range (of vaccines), we can also increase their quantity and provide the population with the opportunity to vaccinate as widely as possible," Muller said.
Convidecia – the second Chinese-produced vaccine approved in Hungary after the Sinopharm vaccine in February – is a single-dose viral vector jab currently approved for use in China, Pakistan and Mexico. Covishield, the Indian version of the British-Swedish AstraZeneca vaccine, is produced by the Serum Institute of India, the world's largest vaccine manufacturer.