China’s mammoth inoculation campaign has seen more than one billion of its citizens – just over 70% of its population – fully vaccinated against the coronavirus, according to figures from Beijing’s National Health Commission.

In a press conference on Thursday, senior health official Lei Zhenglong revealed that as of September 15, over one billion people in China are now double jabbed against the coronavirus, with over 2.16 billion shots having been administered state-wide.

Giving a breakdown of the vaccine distribution by age group, more than 390 million doses had been given to elderly members of the population, protecting some 200 million seniors in China. Meanwhile, 170 million doses have been given to adolescents between the ages of 12 to 17, covering almost 95.3 million people, with state media claiming on Wednesday that 91% of this demographic is fully jabbed.

Lei praised Beijing’s robust vaccine rollout, which has seen China’s own jabs used to inoculate the masses. “The total number of doses and the number of people covered in the country rank first in the world, and the population coverage rate is among the highest,” the health official proclaimed.

At the end of August, the European Union revealed that it had reached its target of fully inoculating over 70% of its adult population, although the vaccine distribution varies greatly by region. Meanwhile, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, over 382 million vaccines have been administered nationwide.

China, home to nearly 1.4 billion people, hoped to fully vaccinate 40% of its population by the end of June. By June 20, Beijing had administered more than a billion Covid-19 shots since it began its vaccination campaign, meaning that Beijing was responsible for more than a third of all doses administered worldwide.

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