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No ban on vaccine material export, sent some of our pending orders to India: White House

On Sunday, the White House said the raw material required for manufacturing Covishield will immediately be made available to India so that it can fast-track its vaccine production.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi |
April 26, 2021 10:30:09 pm
COVISHIELD: Covishield vaccine at a PMC vaccine store ' Kalawati Mavale dawakhana' in Narayanpeth that will be distributed to various vaccination centres. Express photography by Arul Horizon.

The White House on Monday said it has diverted its pending orders of vaccine filters to India — “one effort among many to help the their COVID-19 response”.

Taking to Twitter, White House COVID-19 Supply Coordinator Tim Manning said, “Now here’s what we did yesterday: we diverted our pending orders of vaccine filters to India’s vaccine manufacturing effort. This will help India make more vaccine. And it’s only one effort among many to help the their COVID19 response (e.g. therapeutics, PPE, and oxygen).”

Clarifying that there is no export ban on vaccine raw material, Manning said, “To make vaccine, here in the US we have used the Defense Production Act to ensure we have access to all needed supplies with many US companies.” Manning explained that DPA in these cases just means US companies must prioritise their government contracts ahead of other orders and doesn’t mean an export ban.

“DPA doesn’t even mean a “de facto” ban. Companies are able to export. In fact, companies that supply our vaccine manufacturing export their product all across the world. We are just one “client” of the raw material companies. It also doesn’t create the shortages – there is just more global manufacturing happening everywhere than the suppliers can support,” he said.

On Sunday, the White House said the raw material required for manufacturing Covishield will immediately be made available for India so that it could fast-track its vaccine production.

Giving out the details of global vaccine production, Manning said, “In an average year, the world producers around 4 billion vaccines for things like flu and the measles. This year the world is working to make near 14 billion COVID-19 vaccines in addition to those other 4 billion.”

Calling it an “unprecedented and historic vaccine production effort”, he said, “This is hard work and it’s encouraging to see the progress the world is making.”

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