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China Plays Spoilsport Politics To Detain Canada Vaccine Delivery

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Vaccine

The worst fear of Canada has come true as China refuses to give the first installment of the Covid-19 vaccine. It had used stem cell culture shared by Canada to create the vaccine but has somehow refused to share the first lot. In fact, it has been using the vaccine on its own.

The reason does not seem to anything but a brewing diplomatic dispute between the nations. The initial partnership between Canada’s Dalhousie University and CanSino Biologics was a promising one, which meant that Canada would have had the first lot of the vaccine with it by now.

But the May 2020 partnership hit a roadblock as the relations between the nations have gone sour and CanSino might have been pushed to supply the first lot of vaccine to the Chinese military instead.

It has been further reported that Chinese government has refused to clear the export of the vaccine shipment, leaving Canada to fend for itself. With China moving its military power in India and parts of South East Asia, there is a rumour that they are more interested to make sure that the Chinese military must be made Covid-19 ready before hitting the battlefield.

The man behind the noble idea of striking a promising deal with CanSino Dr. Scott Halperin while speaking to the media has said that, “the time has passed where that clinical study would be relevant. Even if the samples were shipped tomorrow, other trials in other countries will provide the needed data before CCfV would be able to finish its studies. What has also been lost is a chance for the Canadian government to get an inside track on production of one of the earliest coronavirus vaccines.”

Canada’s plans have been pushed back by several months. Further, the way relations have been strained between the nations in also pointing fingers at PM Justin Trudeau’s leadership. Relations between the nations have been growing sour since 2018 when Canadian police detained Meng Wanzhou, chief financial officer of Huawei Technologies Co Ltd, on a US extradition warrant.

Meanwhile in June 2020, two Canadian nationals Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor were charged with espionage and kept under custody. Wanzhou has been also under house arrest and not been released by the Canadian authorities.

On its part, China wants Canada to make the first move to release its citizen, before it can hope to stabilize a five decade old strong trade bond between the nations. Beijing has pushed back against Foreign Affairs Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne’s most recent call for the release of two Canadians detained in China, saying it is up to Canada to make the first move to secure their release.

Champagne raised the cases of former diplomat Michael Kovrig and entrepreneur Michael Spavor during a meeting with Chinese counterpart Wang Yi in Rome, which the Canadian minister is visiting as part of a multi-country tour.

The result is that the political skirmish of this kind is going to cost Canada heavily in terms of its Covid-19 response plan and China is not bothered about that at all.

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