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The Japanese cabinet on Friday decided to utilise 1.4 trillion yen ($13 billion) of reserve funds, mainly for purchasing additional Covid-19 vaccines and securing medicines.
The government has allocated about 841.5 billion yen of the total amount to procure more jabs and promote its vaccination rollout as the country is struggling to curb a recent surge in Covid-19 infections driven by the highly contagious Delta variant, reports Xinhua news agency.
About 235.2 billion yen was earmarked for the “antibody cocktail” treatment, Finance Minister Taro Aso told a press conference.
According to overseas clinical trials, the treatment decreases the risk of hospitalisation or death for patients.
Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga told a news conference two days ago that in response to “urgent tasks”, the government will use the reserve funds for anti-Covid measures such as securing enough vaccines and drugs for the antibody cocktail treatment.
Despite Japan is relatively slow in vaccination progress compared with other developed economies, the country aims to finish inoculating all eligible people in the nation who wish to receive shots sometime between October and November, Suga said.