We demand to execute the person behind this scandal. That's the sentiment of some parents in China after they recently discovered their children might have been injected with a faulty vaccine. Officials say Changsheng Biotech faked production documents, related to a rabies vaccine for children as young as three months.
And backlash has been swift, Premier Li Keqiang slammed the company on Monday, saying it crossed a moral red line. So far, there haven't been any reports of people being harmed by the vaccine, but Reuters Breakingviews' Chris Beddor says, it's all anyone in China can talk about.>> So it's been amazing, frankly, to see how much oxygen this topic has sucked up on Chinese social media.
You think about other topics that have been in the news lately, like the trade war. It's fun to talk about, especially if you're a political type, but for most people it seems pretty abstract, like it doesn't really affect their life in a very meaningful way. This is quite different, in the sense that this is ordinary people who now your kids might have gotten a vaccine that either doesn't work.
Or potentially, in the worst case scenario, it might turn out to have been somewhat dangerous. So I think that really feeds into why you saw such a strong and frankly pretty quick reaction coming from senior leadership in China on this issue.>> It's a hard blow for a country looking to play a bigger global role in the drug market.
And it also comes after a slew of scandals over the past decade, but an explosive scandal like this could be better for the long run.>> This is a government that responds to scandal, what happens is that sometimes you do have a scandal that can lead to long-term institutional changes.
So a classic example is China during the SARS epidemic of 2002 to 2003. Before and partly during SARS they were very reticent about disclosing new cases. Then came institutional changes and now they're regarded as one of the most transparent among the reporting countries to the World Health Organization.
>> Shares in Chinese-backed scene makers fell across the board on Monday. After Li Keqiang spoke out, stock in Changsheng itself fell by 10%, down by almost half since mid July.