TOKYO (Reuters) – Pfizer Inc has applied for approval from Japan’s health ministry to use COVID-19 vaccines on children aged 5 to 11, it said in a statement released on Wednesday.
Pfizer’s Comirnaty vaccine, developed in partnership with BioNTech, was the first COVID-19 vaccine approved for Japan’s general public in February. COVID-19 vaccines developed by Moderna and AstraZeneca have since been approved.
Pfizer’s vaccine is currently being offered to those aged 12 and above. If approved by the health ministry, it will be the first to be administered to children under 11 in Japan.
About 74% of the population is now fully vaccinated, according to broadcaster NHK, and the government is widely expected to start administering booster shots by year-end.
(Reporting by Sakura Murakami; Editing by Michael Perry)