Chinese drug company Sinovac Biotech is progressing further in the trials of its coronavirus vaccine and has given thousands of its employees and their families the experimental CoronaVac vaccine, which is currently undergoing phase three clinical trials.

Like many of its contemporaries who are striving to create a vaccine against COVID-19, Sinovac started operations at the end of August and its vaccine production line has the annual capacity of manufacturing 300 million doses. 

The development was shared by the company spokesman Liu Peicheng on September 6 who confirmed that around 3,000 employees and families have been chosen and they have been offered the drug on a voluntary basis, which falls under China’s emergency use scheme. The company’s chief executive is confident that their vaccine will gain approval by the end of this year. 

In July 2020, China began the emergency use programme involving the administration of the Sinovac coronavirus vaccine to specific groups who are prone to high risk of exposure, like medical personnel, border officials, etc. The vaccine has also been given to workers at the Xinfadi food market, Bejing as it is in the centre of the capital’s last major outbreak in June. 

“It will also prevent repeated epidemics in the coming autumn and winter seasons,” Yin told the China International Fair for Trade in Services in Beijing.

“If there is one person infected in this venue, it will affect hundreds of people. The strong control strategy in China needs to be improved, and improvement needs to rely on vaccines. The pricing [of the vaccine] is unknown at the moment, but not as high as people expect, it should be an acceptable price for everyone,” he added. 

Another company, China National Biotec Group (CNBG) has also given its employees the vaccine it has created. 

“After animal testing, I’m willing to try the company’s product to see if it’s safe and effective, and there are 150 employees like me who have been inoculated,” said Zhang Yinan, deputy general marketing manager at CNBG at the trade fair.

Both Sinovac and CNBG are currently racing to put out their vaccines, with the latter expected to complete its phase three clinical trial in November.

Coronavirus COVID-19 Laboratory Test, Cure, Vaccine Andressa Parreiras, Biomedic, and Larissa Vuitika, biologist, work in a laboratory during the extraction of the virus genetic material on March 24, 2020 in Belo Horizonte, Brazil. The Ministry of Health convened The Technological Vaccine Center of the Federal University of Minas Gerais laboratory to conduct research on the coronavirus (COVID-19) in order to diagnose, test and develop a vaccine. According to the Ministry of Health, as of Tuesday, March 24, Brazil has 1.891 confirmed cases of the coronavirus (COVID-19) and at least 34 recorded deceases. Pedro Vilela/Getty Images