Qatar is likely to receive an initial quantity of COVID-19 vaccine by the end of this year or very early in 2021, a senior health official said.

In a statement issued by the Ministry of Public Health (MoPH), Dr Abdullatif Al Khal, chair of the National Health Strategic Group on Covid-19 and head of Infectious Diseases at Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC), said:

We have been working with Pfizer and BioNTech since the summer and they are confident that if their vaccine gets the necessary regulatory approval, Qatar will be able to receive an initial quantity of vaccines by the end of this year or very early in 2021.

The Ministry said it considers the announcement by Pfizer and BioNtech very promising as it shows that great progress is being made on the development and testing of a safe and effective COVID-19 vaccine.


On Monday, Pfizer said its experimental vaccine has proved to be more than 90% effective in preventing COVID-19 based on initial data from a large study. Pfizer and German partner BioNTech are the first drugmakers to show successful data from a large-scale clinical trial of a coronavirus vaccine.

Qatar had earlier signed deals with Pfizer and BioNTech, as well as with Moderna, to procure Covid-19 vaccines as soon as they are approved and released for global use.

In its statement yesterday, the MoPH said Pfizer and BioNtech stated that preliminary analysis showed that their vaccine’s efficacy rate was over 90%. Dr Al Khal added:

This news gives us good reason to be optimistic that life can return towards normal sooner rather than later, but it is important to note that these are the initial results of the study and additional results of the ongoing clinical trials is required to confirm the vaccine’s effectiveness.