Months after China demanding Nepal to sign ‘non-disclosure agreements’ before providing Sinopharm Covid-19 vaccines to the Himalayan country, the Chinese officials have expressed their disappointment at Nepal authorities for failing to keep the vaccine deal ‘secret’, reports Kathmandu Post.
According to the reports, the Chinese officials are not happy with the Nepalese government over the issue of publicising details of the vaccine deal that was struck between Nepal and China. The Chinese officials have apparently communicated their displeasure at the disclosure regarding the vaccine procurement by the government of Nepal.
Similarly, the Chinese embassy in Kathmandu also had reminded the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the nature of the deal.
China wants Nepal to keep the ‘vaccine-deal’ secret
We had reported earlier in detail about the deadlock Nepal had reached in procuring the vaccines after China had insisted on the Himalayan nation signing a non-disclosure agreement before availing the Sinopharm vaccines.
Under such a non-disclosure agreement, it was agreed that China would provide four million doses of the Chinese Sinopharm vaccine to Nepal. China had strictly insisted that Nepal keep the details, including the price and delivery date, under wraps.
However, a few Nepal media outlets recently published information regarding the vaccine deal between the two countries. Kathmandu Post had reported that Sinopharm had agreed to supply four million vaccines to the Himalayan nation. The Nepalese reported that the price was yet to be fixed given the nature of the agreement, however as per officials, it could be around $10 per dose.
Media reports in Nepal has angered China
The Nepalese media reports on the possible vaccine deal have reportedly angered the Chinese officials, who have now warned the Nepal government against the publicisation of vaccine procurement by the government of Nepal.
Following the controversy, the Health Ministry on Thursday issued a statement, refuting media reports about buying vaccines from China. The Nepal government said that no deal has been reached yet and blamed the media for disseminating information on vaccine procurement from China.
“The government of Nepal has requested the government of the People’s Republic of China to give preference to Nepal on vaccine cooperation. The process to secure vaccines from different countries including China is still ongoing. Media reports on quantity, price, delivery, and other relevant information about vaccine procurement are premature, speculative and misleading. The ministry refutes such unfounded and baseless media reports,” said the statement.