Allaying concerns about the possibility of shortage of COVID-19 vaccine for the second roll-out, India said yesterday it had not imposed any export ban on COVID-19 vaccines and production of COVID-19 vaccines in India was being ramped up further to meet domestic requirement and global demand.
A spokesman for the Indian High Commission made these remarks in response to media queries about the matter.
He said he would like to draw the attention to the response given by the Spokesperson of the Ministry of External Affairs of India in New Delhi on April 2, 2021. He said the supplies took place last week to many countries across the globe.
“Sri Lanka is among 80 countries to which a total of over 64 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines made in India have been supplied, as bilateral gift, through COVAX facility and on commercial orders many of which were placed last year. No country has shared with the world COVID-19 vaccines in such a large quantity while vaccinating its own population.
The arrival of duly approved AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines as a gift from India in January this year enabled vaccination against the dreaded pandemic in Sri Lanka began ahead of earlier plans.
As a close friend and neighbour of Sri Lanka, India ensured that the people of Sri Lanka start benefiting from India’s global prowess in vaccine production within days of the launch of COVID-19 vaccination in India itself.
More than 1.25 million doses of made-in-India COVISHIELD vaccine have so far been delivered to Sri Lanka. Supply of COVID-19 vaccines by India under Vaccine Maitri embodies India’s abiding commitment to utilise its globally renowned vaccine manufacturing capacities in fighting COVID-19 pandemic for larger global good,” the High Commission spokesman said.
Earlier, Lalith Weeratunga, principal advisor to the President, engaged Indian High Commissioner Gopal Baglay in this regard.(Kelum Bandara)