Pfizer Flights Delayed/Monday’s Blackout
Flights with Pfizer vaccines delayed. Deputy Minister of Health Hugo López-Gatell explained that the arrival of a batch of 491,400 doses of Pfizer and BioNTech vaccines to Mexico was delayed due to a winter storm in the US. López-Gatell explained that the vaccine shipment now has two flights: one with 5,000 doses that will arrive in Monterrey, and the other with more than 486,000 doses that will arrive in Mexico City. “They are already on their way. We already confirmed the arrival in Monterrey and the other is about to announce its departure," López-Gatell said.
Vaccinations for elderly begin. López-Gatell reported that yesterday 87,472 COVID-19 vaccines were administered to the elderly. López-Gatell said that, “the vaccination of health workers has not been completed; however, everyone will receive the vaccine. Doctors, nurses and health workers have not been left aside.” López-Gatell explained that the vaccination campaign began in 144 municipalities, where 539 vaccination centers were established. He explained that some states such as Nuevo Leon and Tamaulipas could not receive vaccines due to weather reasons.
Vaccines that arrive in March are for the elderly. President Andrés Manuel López Obrador explained that the Pfizer vaccines that will arrive in March will be directed to the elderly in cities and urban centers. López Obrador said that more than 800,000 doses are expected to arrive in Mexico next month. López Obrador explained that there is a great deal of social inequality and as a result, the government administered the vaccine to people at high risk. “The most vulnerable people are our highest priority. We will not stop, the vaccines will constantly arrive in Mexico and they will be for the people,” López Obrador said.
Mexico to acquire 232.33 million COVID-19 vaccine doses. Minister of Foreign Affairs (SRE) Marcelo Ebrard announced that Mexico has signed several contracts for the purchase of 232 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines. Ebrard explained that the contracts are with Covax for 51.5 million doses; AstraZeneca for 74.4 million; Pfizer for 34.4 million; CanSino for 35 million; AstraZeneca of India for 2.03 million; Sputnik V for 2.03 million; and Sinovac for 10 million. He added that tomorrow at the UN Security Council, the issue of inequality in the access to vaccines will be presented. “There are some producing countries that have high vaccination rates; meanwhile, Latin American countries have very low rates. It's not fair," Ebrard said.
CFE has restored 80 percent of electrical service after Monday's blackout. López Obrador emphasized that Mexico must be self-sufficient in energy to increase its security in the long and short term. López Obrador added that CFE technicians are already restoring electricity service and have made 80 percent progress. "Twenty percent is still missing, but I estimate that by tomorrow the situation will be under control," said López Obrador. The president explained that the blackout was due to the country's dependence on US natural gas to produce electricity. “The gas comes from Texas, and with bad weather, the pipelines were affected and also, the price of natural gas increased exponentially.” López Obrador emphasized that the lesson is that energy must be produced in Mexico and highlighted the importance of implementing projects such as the Dos Bocas refinery.
Mexican authorities are working to fix the power outage that affected 4.7 million users in Nuevo Leon, Coahuila, Tamaulipas and Chihuahua after a cold wave in the north of the country froze pipelines and impeded natural gas imports from Texas. According to CENACE, during the night of Feb. 14 and the early hours of Feb. 15, power plants in the north of the country stopped working due to a lack of natural gas and its frozen infrastructure.
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