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TGA recognises two more COVID-19 vaccines not registered in Australia but used widely internationally

1 November 2021

Today, the TGA determined that Covaxin (manufactured by Bharat Biotech, India) and BBIBP-CorV (manufactured by Sinopharm, China) vaccines would be 'recognised' for the purpose of establishing a traveller's vaccination status. This recognition is for travellers aged 12 and over who have been vaccinated with Covaxin, and those 18 to 60 who have been vaccinated with BBIBP-CorV.

In recent weeks, the TGA has obtained additional information demonstrating these vaccines provide protection and potentially reduce the likelihood that an incoming traveller would transmit COVID-19 infection to others while in Australia or become acutely unwell due to COVID-19. The supporting information has been provided to the TGA from the vaccine sponsor and/or the World Health Organisation.

Importantly, recognition of Covaxin, and BBIBP-CorV, along with the previously announced recognition of Coronavac (manufactured by Sinovac, China) and Covishield (manufactured by AstraZeneca, India), means many citizens of China and India as well as other countries in our region where these vaccines have been widely deployed will now be considered fully vaccinated on entry to Australia. This will have significant impacts for the return of international students, and travel of skilled and unskilled workers to Australia. TGA's updated report on its advice about vaccines not registered in Australia but in use internationally can be found at: COVID-19 vaccines not registered in Australia but in current international use - TGA advice on "recognition".

In addition, with input from the TGA, ATAGI have determined that those who have received two doses of a TGA-approved or recognised vaccine at least 14 days apart are regarded as fully vaccinated from 7 days after the second dose (with the exception of Janssen vaccine, where they are regarded as fully vaccinated 7 days after the single dose). This includes homologous (two doses of the same vaccine) and heterologous (two doses of two different TGA-approved or recognised vaccines) schedules.

From 1 November 2021, vaccinated Australians and permanent residents aged 12 and over may depart Australia without the need to seek a travel exemption. Information about this, and what constitutes 'fully vaccinated', can be found at Travel for vaccinated Australians and permanent residents.