India offers more than 5.5 million doses of Covid-19 vaccine to several countries: MEA

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India has offered more than 55 lakh doses of coronavirus vaccine to its neighboring countries and to several of those in its extended neighborhood, the Foreign Ministry (MEA) said on Thursday.

MEA spokesman Anurag Srivastava told a press conference that many countries are interested in accessing vaccines from India and that he considers cooperation in the global fight against the pandemic of COVID-19 as his duty.

India sent 5,000,000 doses of vaccine to Sri Lanka and 1,000,000 doses to Bahrain on Thursday as part of grants.

“As of January 20, we have offered more than 55 lakh doses of vaccine to our neighboring countries and our extended neighborhood,” Srivastava said.

He said Bhutan has so far received 1.5 lakh doses and the Maldives has received a lakh dose. Nepal and Bangladesh received doses of 10 lakh and 20 lakh respectively.

Srivastava said Myanmar received 15 lakh doses, Mauritius one lakh dose and Seychelles 50,000 doses.

“These supplies are based on the demands of these countries,” he said.

Over the next few days, Srivastava said India plans to “give” one dose of lakh to Oman, five doses of lakh to CARICOM countries and two doses of lakh to Nicaragua. Pacific island states also receive two lakh doses.

The Caribbean Community (CARICOM) is a grouping of 20 island nations that are home to approximately 16 million people.

“In line with the Prime Minister’s announcement that India considers international cooperation in combating the COVID-19 pandemic as its duty, we have taken the role of first responder in our neighborhood and provided supplies to countries beyond, ”Srivastava said. .

He said commercial exports have taken place to Brazil, Morocco and Bangladesh and such supplies are likely to be destined for Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Canada and Mongolia.

“In addition, we will provide 1 crore doses to Africa and 10 lakh to United Nations health workers as part of GAVI’s COVAX facility,” he said.

GAVI is a global vaccine alliance.

“Our external supplies, whether in the form of gifts or on a commercial basis, are based on national availability, licensing issues and regulatory approvals in the countries concerned,” he added.

Srivastava said India will continue to deliver vaccines to partner countries over the coming weeks and months on a phased basis.

“Decisions about these supplies will, of course, be calibrated based on the requirements of the COVID-19 vaccine deployment at home,” he said.

In a major announcement, India announced on January 19 that it would send COVID-19 vaccines as part of a grant to Bhutan, Maldives, Bangladesh, Nepal, Myanmar and Seychelles from 20 January and that supplies to Sri Lanka, Afghanistan and Mauritius would begin after confirmation of the necessary regulatory approvals.

India is one of the world’s largest drug makers, and a growing number of countries have already approached it for their coronavirus vaccines.

India has already launched a massive coronavirus vaccination campaign in which two vaccines, Covishield and Covaxin, are administered to frontline health workers across the country.

While Oxford-AstraZeneca’s Covishield is manufactured by the Serum Institute, Covaxin is produced by Bharat Biotech.

India had previously supplied hydroxychloroquine, remdesivir and paracetamol tablets, as well as diagnostic kits, ventilators, masks, gloves and other medical supplies to a large number of countries to help them make in the face of the pandemic.

(Only the title and image of this report may have been reworked by Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is automatically generated from a syndicated feed.)

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