03:27 GMT03 March 2021
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    MEXICO CITY (Sputnik) - The Mexican state of Nuevo Leon intends to begin negotiations with Russian representatives over the purchase of the Sputnik V vaccine against COVID-19, Manuel de la O Cavazos, the state minister of health, told the El Universal newspaper, adding that the vaccine will likely be produced in the Mexican region as well.

    "The Russian health authorities will accept us, and we will be able to learn about the possible sale of vaccines to the state of Nuevo Leon and, very likely, the Gamaleya institute [Sputnik V's developer] will organise the production of vaccines in the state", de la O Cavazos told the newspaper on Thursday.

    The state health minister said that he was unwilling to wait for the "slow" delivery of vaccines from the federal government, adding that the Nuevo Leon government would look to conclude its own deals.

    "We want more. We have 5.5 million people, and we have received 19,000 [vaccines]", he said.

    Mexico's deputy health minister, Hugo Lopez-Gatell, said on Tuesday that a decision by Mexico's Federal Commission for the Protection against Sanitary Risks on whether to authorise Sputnik V for emergency use is expected over the course of the week.

    In August, Russia became the first country to register a COVID-19 vaccine, which was named Sputnik V. The clinical trials of the jab have shown an efficacy rate of more than 90 percent. Sputnik V was developed by the Gamaleya Research Institute and marketed abroad by the Russian Direct Investment Fund.

    Tags:
    Sputnik V, Russia, coronavirus, COVID-19, Mexico
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