Russian president Thursday said he expects mass vaccination against coronavirus to start in the country by the end of the year. 

Speaking at the VTB Capital Russia Calling! Investment Forum in Moscow, Vladimir Putin said the vaccine has already been delivered to all Russian regions.

“All regions have received the vaccine. I hope that we will be able to start mass vaccination at the end of the year. Our first partner to receive this vaccine is Belarus,” he said.

Putin stressed that main requirements of the coronavirus vaccines are efficiency and safety and that both Russian vaccines meet these conditions. He also announced that the third vaccine will be registered soon.

On Aug. 11, Russia issued a temporary conditional registration to a coronavirus vaccine developed by the Gamaleya Research Institute of Epidemiology and Microbiology.

This kind of registration is issued for medicines which are vital to protect the public health in an emergency such as the coronavirus pandemic.

The Russian coronavirus vaccine, named as Gam-COVID-Vac (Gamaleya COVID Vaccine) by the developers and with the trade name Sputnik V (V for the vaccine), has a valid registration until Jan. 1, 2021 and will undergo a third phase of trials involving up to 40,000 people as well as post-clinical research.

On Oct. 14, Putin said that a second coronavirus vaccine was granted regulatory approval. He said the vaccine, EpiVakKorona, was registered at the Vector State Research Center in Novosibirsk. 

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