A Canadian Olympic gold medallist is hopeful a vaccine deal between the International Olympic Committee and China can help the global fight against COVID-19 ahead of the Tokyo Games this summer.
Wrestler Erica Wiebe says it would be a great outcome if the partnership “can help athletes and citizens of countries with less robust vaccination plans than Canada.”
The IOC has entered into a partnership with the Chinese Olympic Committee to buy and provide vaccines for people taking part in the upcoming games in both Tokyo and Beijing. Vaccines are not mandatory for athletes to compete in the Tokyo Games. The deal comes as criticism of China continues ahead of the 2022 Winter Games in Beijing.
Wiebe says she’s optimistic Canadians can have one dose of an approved vaccine before Canada Day. The Tokyo Olympics are scheduled to begin July 23.
The 2018 Olympic champion says it appears the vaccines being offered in the IOC-China partnership are less effective than the current vaccines approved by Canada. None of the Chinese vaccines are approved for use in Canada.
The Canadian Olympic Committee did not immediately respond for comment.