The United States began shipping 2.5 million doses of Moderna’s Covid vaccine to Bangladesh on Tuesday, a White House official said, as the South Asian country confronted a wave of new infections.
“Thanks to the U.S. commitment to playing a leading role in ending the pandemic everywhere, 2.5 million doses of the Moderna vaccine will begin to ship to Bangladesh,” said the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity.
Illustrating the urgency, delivery is expected to be completed this week.
Bangladesh, which neighbors India, began a severe lockdown on Monday in response to spiraling infections from the Delta variant. People are restricted to their homes, with offices closed, traffic shut down and the security forces enforcing compliance.
The White House said that its vaccine shipments — mostly made through the World Health Organization’s Covax programme — come free in all senses.
“We are sharing these doses not to secure favours or extract concessions. Our vaccines do not come with strings attached. We are doing this with the singular objective of saving lives,” the official said.