Cuba to send to WHO information on Abdala anti-Covid vaccine in March

Havana, Feb 15 (EFE).- Cuba will send to the World Trade Organization in March the dossier on its Abdala anti-Covid vaccine to try and get the organization’s authorization for it, the state-run biopharmaceutical group BioCubaFarma announced on Tuesday.

BioCubaFarma president Eduardo Martinez said at a press conference that at that time WHO experts and representatives from the organization’s regional Americas office will be invited to the new Abdala production plant in the Mariel Special Development Zone –

The documentation on the vaccine, one of three developed by Cuba and the first to enter the WHO’s prequalification process, includes information on the clinical trials and other data related to its production, Martinez said.

According to the BioCubaFarma chief, the communication with representatives of those health entities has been “ongoing” and it is in Cuba’s interest for its vaccines to receive international approval.

Receiving the green light from the WHO would facilitate the international marketing of Cuban vaccines, which could translate into a significant source of revenue and foreign currency for a country that is going through a severe economic crisis.

For now, only a few allies of Havana are using the Cuban vaccines – including Venezuela, Nicaragua, Iran and Vietnam – although the Cuban government has said that it is in talks with another 15 countries who may be interested in using them to inoculate their citizens.

Some countries, with Mexico being in the forefront, have authorized the emergency use of Abdala.

Besides Abdala, Cuba has two other vaccines against Covid-19 – Soberana 02 and Soberana Plus – which received emergency use authorization from the Cuban regulatory entity in mid-2021 and have been administered on a massive scale to the Cuban public.

The three vaccines have shown an efficacy of greater than 90 percent in Cuban studies, according to national health authorities, but none have been reviewed so far by independent external experts.

Martinez also said that the WHO experts will be invited to the Biohabana 2022 biotechnology conference, which will be held in late April and where the pandemic will be one of the priority items on the agenda for discussion.

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