The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) said on Thursday that India has provided 361.94 lakh doses of anti-coronavirus vaccines to various countries, out of which 67.5 lakh doses have been supplied as grant assistance and 294.44 lakh on a commercial basis.
Anurag Srivastava, MEA spokesperson, said that in the coming weeks and months the supply of vaccines would be continued in a phased manner, but it will be ensured that domestic necessities for the national vaccination drive are kept in mind.
He said at an online briefing, “As of now, we have provided a total of 361.94 lakh doses to various countries. This includes 67.5 lakh doses supplied under grant assistance and 294.44 lakh doses under various commercial contracts.”
India has also offered the indigenous vaccines to all members of the diplomatic corps and their families based in the country, said Srivastava.
He said, “It has been offered not only to the diplomats of countries but also to those of UN agencies and intergovernmental organisations working in India. This drive will cover all the locations where they are based.”
To a question on the workshop on “COVID-19 Management: Experience, Good Practices and Way Forward” with 10 neighbouring countries that was held on 18th of February, which was addressed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Srivastava noted among other things, the PM proposed a special visa scheme for doctors and nurses, a regional Air Ambulance agreement for medical contingencies, creation of a regional platform for collating, compiling and studying data about the effectiveness of COVID-19 vaccines.
He said, the prime minister also proposed creating a regional network for promoting technology-assisted epidemiology for preventing future pandemics. These proposals were very well-received by the participating countries and follow-up action is being taken in consultation with ministries concerned said Srivastava.
However, consignments of anti-coronavirus vaccine doses have been sent by India as gifts to countries like Bangladesh, Myanmar, Nepal, Bhutan, the Maldives, Mauritius, Seychelles, Sri Lanka, Bahrain, Oman, Afghanistan, Barbados, and Dominica. Countries that received vaccines on a commercial basis include Brazil, Morocco, Bangladesh, Myanmar, Egypt, Algeria, South Africa, Kuwait, and the UAE.
India on January 19 in a major announcement, said it will send vaccines under grant assistance to several countries. India is one of the world’s largest drugmakers, and an increasing number of countries have already approached it for procuring anti-coronavirus vaccines.