Turkey has stepped up its vaccine production ability, with three Turkish firms boasting the capacity to produce 160 million doses of vaccines, the Turkish industry and technology minister said on Thursday.

“Four Turkish-made COVID-19 candidate vaccines have completed animal trials successfully,” Mustafa Varank told an online medicine and vaccine conference organized by Turkey’s Scientific and Technological Research Council’s (TUBITAK) COVID-19 Platform.

After first appearing in China last December, the COVID-19 pandemic has infected over 74 million people worldwide, killing 1.65 million. Global recoveries have reached 42 million.

In Turkey, 1.9 million cases have been seen since March, while the virus caused around 17,000 deaths.

The COVID-19 Turkey Platform used many different global vaccine technologies, employing even more innovative techniques, said Varank.

Varank said a vaccine and medicine developing center will be established within one year as part of TUBITAK.

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