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Massive Additional Capabilities to Increase Coronavirus Vaccine Production: Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla | India News


NEW DELHI: Huge additional capabilities are being built to increase coronavirus vaccine production in India and the country will continue to work with its international partners to boost manufacturing, Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla said Thursday.
His comments came as India seeks to significantly expand the vaccination program across the country amid a devastating wave of coronavirus pandemic.
At a press conference, the foreign secretary said that international cooperation in vaccine production is crucial and that India is working with its partners such as the United States, Japan, Russia and many others on it.
“As we speak, massive additional capabilities are being created in vaccine production. Bharat BioTech is increasing production, tripling and quadrupling production. SII (Serum Institute of India) has very ambitious plans to expand production.
“There are new vaccines that are entering the market, be it Sputnik or other companies. I think that in the next two or three months we will see a very significant increase in capabilities,” he said.
IBS produces Covishield vaccines while Bharat Biotech manufactures the Covaxin vaccine.
Shringla said that without a global partnership, it will be difficult to meet the challenge of the coronavirus in India and elsewhere.
“All vaccine production worldwide is based on international cooperation. We have been members of COVAX. We contribute to COVAX,” he said.
COVAX is a global initiative that aims at equitable access to Covid-19 vaccines.
“COVAX also helped us in some way in our own research and development efforts and in the development of the vaccine industry. Today, if you are looking to give and take in terms of vaccines, that is part of that international cooperation.” Shringla said.
He said that it is very clear that India is a major vaccine manufacturer and that cooperation to increase production under Quad is also going well.
“Under the Quad, India is obtaining funding and support from the US and Japan to create additional capabilities that would enable both the manufacturer and export of vaccines from India to the Indo-Pacific, in particular to Southeast Asia.
“That is going very well. The program that I think is progressing well. It takes a little time because vaccine capacity building is not an overnight issue.”
Shringla said it needs a lot of investment and a lot of civil and scientific work.
“The only lesson we have learned from Covid is that it is not something that you can deal with within your country and say that I am fine,” he said.
“Covid is global in nature. Unless you eradicate Covid around the world, you won’t be safe from that. You can’t have islands that are completely Covid-free and places that have major Covid incidents,” he added.

Times of India