Brazil’s federal government will purchase 46 million doses of the CoronaVac vaccine being developed by China’s Sinovac Biotech Ltd, a state governor said on as authorities rush to source vaccines in a sometimes-confusing free-for-all. The decision came as Brazil registered over 70,000 new cases of the coronavirus, a daily record, bringing the country’s total caseload above 7 million as a second wave of infections slams the South American country. Brazil has the second-deadliest Covid-19 outbreak in the world, behind only the United States, with over 180,000 deaths from the highly contagious respiratory virus. Wednesday’s record came without even the daily numbers from Sao Paulo state, the nation’s most populous, which has been the epicentre of the outbreak. ‘Transparency’ of China vaccine questioned by Brazil’s drug agency Wellington Dias, the leftist governor of the northeast state of Piaui, said Brazilian Health Minister Eduardo Pazuello told him of the federal government’s plan to purchase the vaccine, which is being produced at the Instituto Butantan, a biomedical centre in Sao Paulo state. He told journalists he saw a copy of a production and delivery contract during a meeting with Pazuello, adding that 9 million doses are set to be delivered on January 25. In a statement, the Instituto Butantan said it had sent a proposal to provide the vaccine in response to a request from the Health Ministry. The Health Ministry did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Pazuello had previously said in October that the government planned to purchase 46 million doses of CoronaVac, but Brazil’s president, Jair Bolsonaro, quickly said Pazuello was mistaken. The right-wing leader, a China critic, has frequently ridiculed the CoronaVac vaccine, saying it is untrustworthy because of its “origin”. Brazil’s Jair Bolsonaro slammed for ‘murderous stupidity’ over vaccination plan So far, the federal government’s main bet has been on the vaccine being produced by AstraZeneca. Bolsonaro’s stance has provoked significant tension with political enemy Joao Doria, the governor of Sao Paulo and a likely rival in the 2022 presidential election, who has made a huge bet on CoronaVac and has said the state’s residents will start receiving the vaccine next month. After reaching a peak in late July, daily coronavirus cases and deaths in Brazil fell steadily until early November. But in the last month, cases and deaths have spiked. Epidemiologists consulted blamed the second wave on the relaxation of social distancing measures and decreased mask usage among Brazilians. They also noted that while the first wave was driven by infections among poor Brazilians who lack the means to quarantine for long periods, the second wave has hit wealthier Brazilians, who have caught the virus while working, dining at restaurants and going to the office, among other activities that had been restricted. Google mobility data indicates that in some locations in Brazil, public transport and workplaces are being more frequented than before the pandemic.