Thai Airways to Pick Up Sinovac Doses on Feb. 24

In this photo released by the Indonesian Presidential Palace, workers unload a container containing experimental coronavirus vaccines made by the Chinese company Sinovac from the cargo bay of a Garuda Indonesia plane at the Soekarno-Hatta International Airport in Tangerang, Indonesia, Tuesday, Jan, 12, 2021. (Indonesian Presidential Palace via AP)

BANGKOK — The first shipment of vaccine against COVID-19 for Thailand will be brought from China on a Thai Airways flight next week, the airline said Tuesday.

The cargo flight, numbered TG675, will depart Beijing in the morning of Feb. 24 and land at Suvarnabhumi Airport at around 11am, along with 200,000 doses of vaccine developed by Chinese firm Sinovac, according to a statement by Thai Airways.

The statement, which quotes Thai Airways director Chaiyapruk Didyasarin, said a specialized freezer and experts will be onboard to ensure that the vaccine is kept in ideal condition during the flight.


“We are deeply proud to participate in the mission to transport the vaccine against COVID-19 to the Thais,” Chaiyapruk said.


Health minister Anutin Charnvirakul told reporters earlier this week that the shipment will undergo the necessary inspection for a formal approval before the doses can be distributed. He did not mention when that would happen.

The government said it has ordered 2 million doses from Sinovac, which will be handed out to health professionals and vulnerable groups in the provinces hardest hit by the coronavirus. The rest of the public will receive up to 61 million doses developed by British firm AstraZeneca, according to health authorities.