Saudi Arabia’s Food and Drug Authority announced on Thursday that it had approved the registration of the Pfizer-BioNTech coronavirus vaccine in the Kingdom, according to the Saudi Press Agency (SPA).
“The decision to approve the registration of the vaccine and to allow its use came based on the data provided by the company, Pfizer, on November 24,” SPA said, adding that the Kingdom is set to import and use the vaccine.
“The authority held several meetings to study the data provided by the company, which included meetings with local and international experts and scientists, in addition to meeting with the manufacturer and its representatives to answer inquiries submitted by the authority,” SPA added.
SPA reported that Saudi Arabia’s Food and Drug Authority said concerned health authorities would start import procedures. The authority will analyze samples from each incoming shipment of the vaccine before using it to ensure its quality.
“The Ministry of Health will announce the date of the arrival of the vaccine, and start using it after completing import requirements,” the SPA report added.
On December 31, 2019, the Chinese authorities informed the world health organization (WHO) about an unknown pneumonia outbreak. On January 30, WHO recognized the new coronavirus outbreak as a public health emergency of international significance.