World, Asia - Pacific

COVID-19: Pakistan to send chloroquine to allies

Cabinet approves export of anti-malaria drug to Turkey, Qatar, US, Saudi and UK to treat COVID-19 patients

Islamuddin Sajid   | 21.04.2020
COVID-19: Pakistan to send chloroquine to allies


Pakistan announced it would send the anti-malaria drug chloroquine to help friendly nations deal with the COVID-19 crisis, official media said Tuesday.

The decision was made in a Cabinet meeting that was chaired by Prime Minister Imran Khan, according to state-run Radio Pakistan.

"The Cabinet also approved export of chloroquine to the USA, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, UK, Italy, Qatar, and Kazakhstan as Pakistan has additional stock of the drug," Special Assistant on Information and Broadcasting Firdous Ashiq Awan told reporters after the meeting.

Pakistan has 40 million chloroquine tablets in stock and raw materials to produce more.

"One million chloroquine tablets will be sent to Saudi Arabia and United States each, 500,000 to Turkey and Italy each, five million to the United Kingdom, 700,000 to Kazakhstan and 300,000 to Qatar," the Dawn newspaper quoted Awan.

Awan said Pakistan stands in the current crisis with its friends who have always helped Pakistan in difficult times.

Khan also informed the Cabinet that leaders of nations have called him and requested the chloroquine.

Last month, Pakistan donated 500,000 tablets of chloroquine to Italy after thousands there were infected by the virus.

Worldwide demands for hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine rose after the drug showed positive results in fighting coronavirus-related lung infections.

Scientists and researchers are scrambling to find a vaccine for the novel virus which has infected over 2.49 million worldwide and killed more than 171,700.

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