HONG KONG (CNA): Hong Kong's government on Thursday (Feb 18) approved the Chinese-made Sinovac coronavirus vaccine for emergency use after a panel of experts fast-tracked its recommendation despite the drug's comparatively low efficacy.

The city's health secretary, Sophia Chan, said the vaccine met the "safety, efficacy and quality requirements specified in Hong Kong emergency situations" and that the benefits outweighed the risks.

Patrick Nip, secretary for civil service, said the government expected to receive 1 million doses of Sinovac vaccines on Friday afternoon with vaccinations expected to start on Feb 26.