China promises its Mekong neighbours priority access to a coronavirus vaccine developed in China

China stepped up its vaccine diplomacy on Monday with Premier Li Keqiang promising five Southeast Asian partners priority access to a 
 vaccine while also pledging to share water control information for flood-hit nations along the Mekong River.

Li made the remarks at a videoconference of the Lancang-Mekong Cooperation (LMC) leaders’ meeting, a cooperation platform between China, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand and Vietnam.

LMC partners would be given priority access to the vaccine after China had fully developed it and put it into use, Li said, according to a report from state-run China Radio International.

China is developing two of the 30 candidate vaccines currently in clinical evaluation worldwide, according to the latest figures from the World Health Organisation.

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Keegan Elmer