China approves more swine flu vaccines | world | Hindustan Times
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China approves more swine flu vaccines

world Updated: Sep 16, 2009 17:31 IST

Chinese authorities have approved more new swine flu vaccines, manufacturers and state media said on Wednesday, as the world's most populous nation braces for a feared winter outbreak.

At least five A(H1N1) influenza vaccines have now been cleared by the state food and drug administration, ahead of China's launch of a mass vaccination programme.

The state awarded vaccine production licences to the Shanghai Institute of Biological Sciences and to Beijing-based Tiantan Biological Products, they said in separate statements on their websites.
A licence also was granted to Changsheng Biological Sciences, based in the northeastern province of Jilin, Xinhua news agency reported.

China had previously approved two other domestically produced swine flu vaccines -- one by Beijing-based firm Sinovac and another by Hualan Biological Engineering, based in the central province of Henan.

The health ministry warned last week that "tens of millions" of people could contract the virus in China in the coming months.

China has so far recorded 9,103 cases of the virus, according to the latest health ministry figures, but has not reported any deaths.

The government has said it plans to vaccinate 65 million people, or five percent of the total population, before year's end.

The World Health Organization said on Friday that at least 3,205 people had died worldwide from the virus.