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Sunday, May 09, 2021

Experts say, much more thought and planning should have gone in both timing and sustaining the exports. This coupled with not placing advance purchase orders to build stock and not allowing liquidity for manufacturers to increase capacity has now strained supplies. “Of course, exporting vaccines to those who paid for it and need it was a commercial and moral obligation. But we should have planned this a lot better so that both domestic supply and exports could be sustained at an optimal level,” said virologist Shahid Jameel. By December 2020, Serum Institute of India (SII) had offered 10 crore shots at a discounted rate for domestic use but the government dithered on pre-booking further stocks even after setting a national target to vaccinate a vulnerable population of 30 crore by July 2021.

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Anandiben Patel
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