Coronavirus vaccine in Taiwan - Feb/Mar 2021

Eh, not exactly. There are too few doses so on the authorized 52 centers they will focus on ICU and other first line medical personnel at risk of getting the COVID from treating patients with it. And even so, not enough for all of them.

So, while good and necessary, it is a small step in a slow, long marathon. Celebrate, yes, but do not grab your luggage, bikini and sunglasses yet. We’re still stuck.

Premier Su and Minster Chen step up:


They should have been doing their job last year getting those vaccines .


All of East Asia—except perhaps South Korea—has been slow in acquiring vaccines. The PRC is the outlier as it has simply set out to develop and export its own dodgy products.

Looking forward to reading some analysis why.


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Mostly because they are dirt poor. The government should have been throwing money at this instead.they are throwing a bung to some local manufacturers first.

Edit - Taiwan is rich that was my point.

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Is Japan poor? Is Taiwan poor?

Bloomberg had a report in January on this topic, but it now seems to be behind a paywall:


Logical - the more you have covid under control, the less desperate you become using huge amounts of money to acquire vaccines prior to their approval

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Huge amounts ? What are we talking about 50 bucks by 20 million , 1.billion, 2 billion USD?
A rounding error for Taiwan’s budget . They messed up, of course that is a common theme.

They also didn’t need to put 'huge amounts down prior to approval ’ , Israel signed a deal to share anonymous vaccine data.

Most people have no clue how rich Taiwan is.

$730.162 billion (nominal, 2021 est.) $1.3 trillion (PPP, 2020

I repeat this here as it is more on topic…and to avoid repeating ourselves:

Medical personnel in contact with COVID19 patients, to be precise.

A doctor pal in one of the 57 hospitals was hoping to get hers but there are really not enough at the moment.

Minister Chen and Prime minister Su took theirs to alleviate fears and because they had promised to be the first to show all is A-Ok.

Expiration date for the batch sent to Taiwan is September. At the rate this is moving, the vaccines will be gone well before that, no fears of them going bad.


Taiwan did not mess up.

  1. US and other Western countries need the vaccine more, with more deaths and economic loss.

  2. There are simply not enough factories in the West. Now if they move production to India, that will get moving, but propietary rights and trade secrets had to be arranged.

  3. Remember throwing money to mask purchase got you more expensive masks? If there are simply no vaccines to purchase, no matter how much money you throw, then you ain’t getting them. And it is literally competing against the world to get tens of millions of doses. It is not like the old country, negotiating for a few, plus having the world on its side.

  4. Vaccines are new, untested, everyone and their mother developing them…with varying success. Asia could afford to wait and see what worked, what turned people to zombies or had other unpleasant effects.


How come Korea got millions of vaccines and other small countries such as Israel. Taiwan could have done a lot better on vaccines, I get the impression Chen Shi Zhong didn’t trust vaccination somewhat, also govt favoured local biotechs who don’t have the experience and scale to get this done in any reasonable time frame


This seems on the mark.

I wonder if Tsai’s earlier fascination with setting up a local biotech park or industry is getting in the way here…



The politicians may not have understood how difficult making a vaccine quickly actually is . This and lobbying by local companies as per usual. I know one of the companies working on it they are small scale company. Yes small vaccine companies have made wonderful vaccines but they depended on big pharma to get the validation done and production scaled up.

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I do enjoy watching Arirang. Very entertaining and aside from the official daily briefs on COVID spread and casualties, there are many programs covering the most updated info on the plague there, from panels of experts to the new normal, arts and culture under COVID.

The situation there has been touch and go at times. Vaccination has not gone smoothly either. And their population is several times ours. Check on them, they do hope to achieve herd immunity by September…if the vaccines arrive on time. It is not a given. And they have a factory there.

The thing is they may have signed lots of deals…but the vaccines still won’t be delivered because, ad I said, production has to be divided among the whole world.

They like us would prefer to have control of the vaccine production. Reasons already stated.

I still believe Taiwan does have the expertise and technological ability to pull vaccine production. If the worst fears of this virus becoming endemic do happen, then it will be necessary to establish local production.

More importantly, no one knows which way this virus will turn. Would you gamble it cannot get worse and cause global economic breakdown? Then we will need to pull ourselves by our own straps.

And we need to get ready for the next virus released by our lovely neighbors.

I’m not sure how many people, or who, knew this last year (and I’m still waiting to read a good long-form article on how all this purchasing was done by different countries). It wasn’t that long ago that having vaccines by the end of 2020 seemed excessively optimistic. If the different vaccines had panned out differently, would Israel and Britain’s willingness to pay more (I think?) now look absurd? Yeah, turns out they made the right call, but we’re saying that with the benefit of hindsight.

Is Taiwan’s timeline for vaccines that different from most other (relatively) high-income countries? Not that I’m even sure how big that field is, with lots of those countries folded into the EU. How are things in Australia, New Zealand, Japan?

Australia is ramping up with locally produced AZ vaccine.

Korea - started similar to Taiwan South Korea coronavirus: PM aims for 'herd immunity by autumn' - BBC News

It’s important for Taiwan to try to develop it’s own vaccines but that should have been a backup plan.

He’s not being very truthful.becside both companies are still running phase II trials. We don’t even know if they work yet and the require a phase III trial .

Taipei, March 5 (CNA) Taiwan’s domestically developed COVID-19 vaccines could start mass production in July, but only if they successfully complete ongoing clinical trials, Health and Welfare Minister Chen Shih-chung (陳時中) said Friday.

Speaking to reporters before a legislative hearing in Taipei, Chen said Taiwanese-made vaccines could hopefully enter production in July at the earliest.


Taiwan cannot depend on other countries delivery because China can close those doors anytime.

Yeah well that’s not an excuse is it.
In the case of the vaccination from Europe they may be further delayed though if the EU puts up export restrictions.

Heres that list again. Two Taiwanese vaccine projects listed too. It seems at least one will be trialled in Brazil.

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No, it is a reason not to put the eggs on the outsiders help basket.

Taiwan is out of WHO treaties and protection. Any small poor country in the 4th world has better assurance of getting vaccines.

Europe has its own people to fill in first. They already have protests for selling precious vaccines abroad, contracts my foot.

I don’t think that’s true . Taiwan has a good relationship with the US and strong economic relations with many countries e.g. Germany. Plus Taiwan could offer a lot of juicy cash.
The issue is obviously bigger than China and related to a lack of supplies round the world.