COVID-19 vaccination in South Korea

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COVID-19 vaccination in South Korea
South Korea Doses Given by Province map per population (as of 1st of July).png
South Korea. Percentage with total doses given as of 2 March 2022.[1]
Date26 February 2021 (2021-02-26) – present
LocationSouth Korea
CauseCOVID-19 pandemic in South Korea

COVID-19 vaccination in South Korea is an ongoing immunization campaign against severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), the virus that causes coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), in response to the ongoing pandemic in the country.

Vaccination program

Daily updates are provided by Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency.[2]

Vaccines delivered per pharmaceutical company as of 7 August 2022 [refresh]

  Pfizer-BioNTech (11,488,000) (46.10%)
  Oxford-AstraZeneca (11,268,000) (45.22%)
  Moderna (1,151,000) (4.62%)
  Janssen (1,012,800) (4.06%)

As of 5 July 2021, due to vaccine shortages, the vaccination rate has been slowed down since 20 June. The vaccination rate remains 29% for more than two weeks.[3] According to JoongAng Ilbo, as of 5 July, the remaining amount of the COVID-19 vaccine is 1.8 million doses, including 1.4 million from Pfizer.[4]

On 6 July 2021, it is reported that South Korea has signed a deal with Israel to borrow 700,000 expiring doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech's vaccine. South Korea will return the same amount of vaccines to Israel around September or October of this year.[4][5]

On 29 November 2021, President Moon Jae-in urged the rapid administration of booster shots against COVID-19, in response to an increased number of severe cases and deaths following the easing of anti-virus rules.[6]


On 10 February 2021, South Korea granted its first approval of a COVID-19 vaccine to Oxford–AstraZeneca, allowing the two-shot regimen to be administered to all adults, including the elderly. The approval came with a warning, however, that consideration is needed when administering the vaccine to individuals over 65 years of age due to limited data from that demographic in clinical trials.[7][8]

On 14 April 2021, The additional 250,000 doses of Pfizer/BioNTech vaccines arrived in the country.[9]

On 3 June 2021, the United States donated one million doses of Johnson & Johnson's vaccine to South Korea. The United States initially announced to donate 550,000 doses to South Korean troops working in close contact with American forces.[10][11]

On 19 August 2021, Romania decided to donate 450,000 expiring Moderna vaccines to South Korea.[12]

Vaccines on order

Vaccine dose Progress Doses ordered Manufacturer Remarks
Oxford-AstraZeneca Approved for use 20 million South Korea SK Bioscience -
up to 2.6 million South Korea SK Bioscience
Italy Catalent
Pfizer–BioNTech Approved for use 96 million Belgium Pfizer -
up to 0.4 million Belgium Pfizer COVAX
0.7 million Belgium Pfizer Vaccine swap from Israel[13]
1 million Belgium Pfizer Vaccine swap from Romania
Janssen Approved for use 6 million United States Emergent BioSolutions -
1.4 million An offer from the United States[14]
Moderna Approved for use 40 million Switzerland Lonza
South Korea Samsung Biologics
0.4 million Switzerland Lonza An offer from Romania
Novavax Approved for use 40 million South Korea SK Bioscience -
Sputnik V Pre-review None South Korea Hankook Korus Pharm -


Vaccine Manufacturer Submitted EUA Approval Deployment
South Korea SK Bioscience 4 January 2021 None 10 February 2021[15] 26 February 2021[16]
Italy Catalent 4 January 2021 12 May 2021 21 May 2021 14 May 2021
Belgium Pfizer 25 January 2021 3 February 2021[17] 5 March 2021[18] 27 February 2021[19]
United States Emergent BioSolutions 27 February 2021 None 7 April 2021[20] 10 June 2021[21]
Switzerland Lonza 12 April 2021 None 21 May 2021[22] 17 June 2021[23]
South Korea Samsung Biologics Pending Pending Pending Pending
Novavax South Korea SK Bioscience Pending Pending Pending Pending


AstraZeneca signed a deal with South Korea's SK Bioscience to manufacture its vaccine products. The collaboration calls for the SK Bioscience to manufacture AZD1222 for local and global markets.[24] The World Health Organization approved AstraZeneca's COVID-19 vaccine for emergency use on February. The initial approval covers doses produced by AstraZeneca and South Korea's SK Bioscience.[25]

South Korea's Korus Pharm has formed a consortium to produce Russia's Sputnik V COVID-19 vaccine. the consortium will produce 500 million doses of the vaccine.[26] However, The Sputnik V doses manufactured in South Korea are not for domestic use.[27] The vaccine is to be exported to Russia and UAE.[28]

Novavax will license out its NVX-CoV2373 vaccine technology to SK Bioscience for contract manufacturing purposes. SK Bioscience will manufacture 40 million doses of Novavax vaccines.[29]

Vaccines in trial stage

On 2 March 2022, SK Bioscience submitted investigational new drug for GBP510 COVID-19 vaccine candidate to Korea Ministry of Food and Drug Safety, for Phase III clinical trial. SK Bioscience plans its Phase III trial in form of comparative effectiveness clinical trial, targeting 4,000 people in South Korea.

Vaccine Type (technology) Phase I Phase II Phase III
INO-4800 DNA Green check.svg Completed Green check.svg Completed In progress
GX-19 (GX-19N) DNA Green check.svg Completed In progress In progress
EuCorVac-19 Subunit Green check.svg Completed In progress Dark Red x.svg Not Yet
GBP510 Subunit Green check.svg Completed Green check.svg Completed In progress
AdCLD-CoV19 Viral vector Green check.svg Completed In progress Dark Red x.svg Not Yet
GLS-5310 DNA Green check.svg Completed In progress Dark Red x.svg Not Yet
NBP2001 Subunit Green check.svg Completed Dark Red x.svg Not Yet Dark Red x.svg Not Yet
EG-COVID mRNA In progress In progress Dark Red x.svg Not Yet
IN-B009 Subunit In progress Dark Red x.svg Not Yet Dark Red x.svg Not Yet


  1. ^ South Korea COVID-19 Vaccine Tracker: Provinces Map. By George Karabassis.
  2. ^ "코로나19 백신 및 예방접종: 안전하고, 신속하게 추진합니다" (Press release) (in Korean). Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency. Retrieved 19 June 2021.
  3. ^ "어제 1차 접종자 '0명'… 백신 부족에 접종속도 급격히 느려져" [Yesterday's 1st vaccination '0'... Vaccination rate is rapidly slowed]. Asian Economy. 5 July 2021.
  4. ^ a b "백신 보릿고개 韓, 기한 다된 이스라엘 화이자 백신 빌린다" [Vaccine shortage, Korea borrows expiring Pfizer vaccine from Israel]. JoongAng Ilbo. 7 July 2021.
  5. ^ "Israel, South Korea strike COVID vaccine exchange deal". The Jerusalem Post. 6 July 2021.
  6. ^ "S.Korean president urges rapid administration of booster shots against COVID-19". Retrieved 29 November 2021.
  7. ^ Kim, Han-joo (10 February 2021). "S. Korea approves AstraZeneca's COVID-19 vaccine for all adults". Yonhap News Agency. Retrieved 10 February 2021.
  8. ^ Maresca, Thomas (10 February 2021). "South Korea approves AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine". UPI. Retrieved 10 February 2021.
  9. ^ "Coronavirus: South Korea warns of possible fourth wave, Thailand cases surge". South China Morning Post. 14 April 2021. Retrieved 18 April 2021.
  10. ^ "U.S. Will Provide Covid-19 Vaccines to 550,000 South Korean Troops Engaged With U.S. Forces". The Wall Street Times. 21 May 2021.
  11. ^ "U.S. Vaccines Ship to South Korea as Donations Start to Flow". Bloomberg. 4 June 2021.
  12. ^ "Romania donates 450,000 Moderna vaccines to South Korea". MSN. 20 August 2021.
  13. ^ Dasl Yoon, Dov Lieber (6 July 2021). "World's First Covid-19 Vaccine Swap Sends Israel's Expiring Supply to South Korea". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 28 July 2021.
  14. ^ Hyonhee Shin (30 May 2021). "South Korea says 1 million doses of J&J COVID-19 vaccines to arrive this week from U.S." Reuters.
  15. ^ Maresca, Thomas (10 February 2021). "South Korea approves AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine". UPI. Retrieved 28 February 2021.
  16. ^ Kim, Tong-hyung (26 February 2021). "South Korea starts vaccinating, but people over 65 must wait". ABC News. Retrieved 28 February 2021.
  17. ^ Lim, Jeong-yeo (3 February 2021). "South Korea approves special import of Pfizer vaccine". The Korea Herald. Retrieved 28 February 2021.
  18. ^ Kim, Han-joo (5 March 2021). "S. Korea approves Pfizer's COVID-19 vaccine amid immunization push". Yonhap News Agency. Retrieved 5 March 2021.
  19. ^ Lee, Kyung-eun (27 February 2021). "S. Korea begins rolling out Pfizer vaccines on second day of national vaccination program". Arirang News. Retrieved 28 February 2021.
  20. ^ "S. Korea approves Janssen's COVID-19 vaccine". Yonhap News Agency. 7 April 2021. Retrieved 8 April 2021.
  21. ^ "Koreans begin to get Janssen vaccine amid rising hope of normal life". Yonhap News Agency. 10 June 2021. Retrieved 10 June 2021.
  22. ^ Kim, Han-joo (21 May 2021). "Moderna COVID-19 vaccine gets final nod in S. Korea". Yonhap News Agency. Retrieved 21 May 2021.
  23. ^ Hwangbo, Hye-gyeong (17 June 2021). "모더나 국내 첫 접종 시작..."1차 1,400만 명 넘을 것"". YTN (in Korean). Retrieved 28 July 2021.
  24. ^ Kim, Yoo-chul (30 November 2020). "Korea signs agreement with AstraZeneca for COVID vaccine". The Korea Times. Retrieved 30 January 2021.
  25. ^ Steinhauser, Gabriele (15 February 2021). "WHO Approves AstraZeneca Covid-19 Vaccine for Emergency Use". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 1 March 2021.
  26. ^ Choi, Moon-hee (26 February 2021). "South Korean Companies to Produce Russia's Sputnik V Vaccine". Businesskorea. Retrieved 1 March 2021.
  27. ^ Shim, Elizabeth (25 February 2021). "South Korean consortium to make 500 million doses of Sputnik V vaccine". UPI. Retrieved 1 March 2021.
  28. ^ Kim, Byeong-ho (23 February 2021). "주문량만 6억5000도스, 국내 생산 러 백신 공장 가보니". Maeil Business (in Korean). Retrieved 1 March 2021.
  29. ^ Lim, Jeong-yeo (16 February 2021). "SK Bioscience to manufacture Novavax vaccine for 20 mil population". The Korea Herald. Retrieved 1 March 2021.

External links