An A330-202 is currently in the air taking the Sputnik V COVID vaccine to Argentina – hours after the South American country gave the Russian jab approval.
The Aerolineas Argentinas A330-202, LV-GIF msn 1748, departed Moscow at 10:40pm as flight AR1061 on 23 December and is due to land in Buenos Aires at 9:45am.
Argentina is now the first country outside of the Soviet Union to authorise the vaccine, and follows a string of countries approving the rival Pfizer-BioNTech shot.
Argentina President Alberto Fernandez said earlier in December he hoped to vaccinate 300,000 Argentines before the end of 2020.
“It’s very important that Argentina starts to vaccinate as soon as possible,” Carla Vizzotti, the country’s secretary for health access, said on Wednesday.
The Sputnik V has its own dedicated, official website that brands the jab as “The first registered vaccine against COVID-19”.
“The Sputnik V vaccine’s efficacy is confirmed at 91.4 per cent based on data analysis of the final control point of clinical trials,” the website reads. “The Sputnik V vaccine efficacy against severe cases of coronavirus is 100 per cent.
“Requests for more than 1.2 billion doses of the Sputnik V vaccine came from more than 50 countries. The vaccine supplies for the global market will be produced by RDIF’s international partners in India, Brazil, China, South Korea and other countries. “
Earlier this week, World of Aviation reported how the first shipment of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine was flown into Singapore from Belgium onboard a Singapore Airlines Boeing 747-400 freighter.
The shipment from Brussels was brought to Singapore onboard flight SQ7979 on Monday evening, and is believed to be the first COVID vaccine shipment to arrive in Asia.
The Singapore Airlines 747-412F(SCD), 9V-SFM msn 32898, departed Brussels at 9:42pm on 20 December and landed in Sharjah before continuing on to Singapore.
Logistics services firm DHL said the vaccines came direct from a manufacturing site in Puurs, Belgium, and were protected by security escorts as they made their way to Brussels International Airport.
The vaccine was packed in dry ice in thermal shipping boxes, which are designed to keep the vials at -70 degrees Celsius, colder than Antarctica in winter.
The boxes were then loaded onto a SIA’s Boeing 747-400 freighter, departing Brussels on Sunday night, before arriving on the tarmac at Changi Airport at 7.36pm.
Additional reporting by Hannah Dowling