A recent post on Sputnik V’s Twitter account boasts that Chile has become the 69th country to register the Russian vaccine. “Sputnik V is now authorized in 69 countries with a total population of over 3.7 billion people,” reads the text.
This upbeat tone is in stark contrast with recent reports from a number of Latin American countries who have voiced frustration over large-scale delays to Sputnik deliveries, revealing that Russia’s vaccine diplomacy might be failing to live up to promises.
Guatemala, a country of 18 million, became the latest country to renegotiate its Sputnik contract, cancelling half of its 16 million dose because of delays, the president announced on July 28. Negotiations with The Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF), which markets the vaccine abroad, began at the end of June after deliveries were delayed and new daily cases were rising.
Sputnik has set out an ambitious delivery plan, promising 700 million doses worldwide this year. But supply side issues have halted vaccination drives in a number of countries.