A United Arab Emirates company says it is nearing the end of phase three clinical trials of a Chinese Covid-19 vaccine candidate and hopes to manufacture it next year. The trial, which began in mid-July, is a partnership between Sinopharm’s China National Biotec Group and Abu Dhabi-based artificial intelligence and cloud computing company Group 42 (G42). The vaccine uses an inactivated virus – a well-known technology which has been used against diseases such as influenza and measles. Two doses are given. It has been administered to more than 31,000 people in the UAE, Egypt , Bahrain and Jordan, G42 Healthcare chief executive Ashish Koshy said. Results analysis and publication would happen in about two months, he said. G42 had distribution and manufacturing agreements with Sinopharm and hoped to provide the UAE and other regional states with the vaccine, especially those that took part in the trial, Koshy said. The target was to produce between 75 and 100 million doses next year in the UAE, he said. “Early results are showing it is safe, there is a general rise in antibodies for all the volunteers,” he said. “In terms of being effective it is on the journey, but only time will tell in terms of the whole picture.” Why China’s coronavirus response has fuelled hostility in the West Emirati volunteer Wo’oud al-Motawaa was vaccinated about two months ago and returned to the facility in the emirate of Abu Dhabi for one of her follow-up checks. “I work in a hospital so it was something that we want to help with,” she said. “We trust our country.” G42 has said the UAE population’s diversity was an asset, offering about 200 different nationalities. Koshy said about 125 nationalities had taken part so far. The UAE, whose coronavirus tally stands at more than 101,000 infections and 435 deaths, has seen the number of daily new cases surge over the past two months, from 164 on August 3 to 1,231 last week. The UAE has a high per capita rate of Covid-19 tests, having carried out more than 10 million in a population of about 9.9 million, according to the government statistics authority.