DHAKA, Bangladesh — India on Thursday sent 2 million doses of a coronavirus vaccine to Bangladesh, a gift that is likely to foster bilateral relations further between the two South Asian neighbors.
Bangladesh’s Foreign Minister A.K. Abdul Momen and Health Minister Zahid Maleque received the consignment from Indian High Commissioner to Dhaka Vikram Doraiswami in Bangladesh’s capital.
The AstraZeneca/Oxford University vaccine, manufactured under license by Serum Institute of India, will be given to frontline workers including doctors and nurses. The government says the inoculations are expected to start early next month.
Momen praised India for the gesture.
“This proves the true friendship between Bangladesh and India,” he said.
For decades Bangladesh has established a strong network of volunteers and health workers for vaccination.
More vaccines are expected from India under other arrangements soon, officials said.
Bilateral relations between the two neighbors have reached new heights over Bangladesh’s support for India in many regional and international affairs, while India is a major trade partner.
Bangladesh usually balances diplomatically between two Asian powers — China and India — as both the countries are close allies. Officials say Bangladesh is also expecting to have Chinese vaccines in the future.