09:38 GMT18 January 2021
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    MOSCOW (Sputnik) - Ethiopia is open to producing Russia's Sputnik V vaccine against COVID-19 should Russian investors show interest, the African country's ambassador in Moscow, Alemayehu Tegenu Aargau, told Sputnik in an interview, adding that Ethiopia is also ready to purchase the vaccine once it becomes available on the market.

    "So, we always encourage Russian investors to invest in Ethiopia. If an interest from investors to establish a factory in Ethiopia [appears], they are welcome. We encourage [them], we encourage this vaccination," Aargau remarked.

    The ambassador noted that the ongoing conflict in the northern Tigray region does not affect the whole country, and said that there were multiple industrial parks available for investors to use.

    "So if a Russian investor wants to invest, they can communicate to us, they can communicate to the Ethiopian Investment Commission, they can get a place in the industrial park and start production", Aargau said, adding that the parks have electricity, customs facilities, and banking services.

    Additionally, the ambassador said there were multiple benefits of producing the Sputnik V vaccine in Ethiopia.

    "Ethiopia has 110 million people … if you open a factory in Ethiopia, in Ethiopia there is a big market, one. Two, you can export to different parts of Africa. So, we encourage to open factories in Ethiopia. That is the first priority. Of course, we are encouraging different investors to open a factory in Ethiopia. If the Russians are ready to open the factory, COVID-19 vaccination factory, they are welcome", Aargau stated.

    Sputnik V, which has been developed by the Gamaleya Research Institute of Epidemiology and Microbiology and produced in cooperation with the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF), became the world's first registered vaccine against COVID-19 when it was registered by the Russian Ministry of Health on 11 August.

    The vaccine has proven to be 91.4 percent effective 28 days after the injection of the first dose of the vaccine, according to the results of the second interim analysis, which were published by the RDIF on Tuesday.

    Preliminary data taken from the 42nd day after the first dose suggests that the efficacy rate is above 95 percent.

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