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Thursday, January 20, 2022

India looking to buy remdesevir from Egypt, UAE, Health News, ET HealthWorld

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India looking to buy remdesevir from Egypt, UAENew Delhi: While Gilead Sciences of the US has agreed to provide 4,50,000 vials of remdesevir, the government is also looking to procure it from countries like Egypt, Uzbekistan, UAE and Bangladesh.

Official sources said Indian missions in these countries are working to facilitate purchase of the Covid-19 drug which remains in high demand in India as the pandemic runs riot.

Faced with an acute shortage of the antiviral drug, India had earlier this month waived import duty on import of remdesevir and the raw materials used to manufacture it. Official sources here described as a diplomatic victory Gilead’s decision to donate 4,50,000 vials of remdesevir and also provide raw materials for ramping up local production.

With the first US consignment of oxygen-related equipment likely to arrive in India on Friday, sources here also denied that India had not earlier asked the US for Covid-19 vaccines, AstraZeneca or any other available with the country.

A US official was quoted as saying this week that India hadn’t asked for “ready-to-use” vaccines. Sources here said though, that India’s need for vaccine was at least twice conveyed to the US.

To expedite its own vaccination programme, India is hoping to get some of the 10 million doses of AstraZeneca which the US already has and another 50 million doses under production there. India also expects US to approve supply of filters required for manufacturing the Covishield vaccine.

Official sources also clarified that while India wasn’t going to reject assistance in the form of grants, the government had not issued any appeal for international help.


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