India will shortly supply one crore doses of COVID-19 vaccine to Africa and another ten lakh doses to United Nations health workers under the GAVI’s Covax facility. Covax is an initiative of the United Nations and GAVI for providing vaccines to countries that do not have the economic wherewithal to purchase, and that will otherwise lag behind in coming out of the pandemic.
India will also be gifting vaccines to Latin America—Nicaragua (two lakh doses), CARICOM countries (five lakh), Pacific Island states (two lakh) as well as to Oman (one lakh) in the middle east, said Anurag Srivastava, spokesperson, ministry of external affairs.
So far, India has gifted 55 lakh doses of vaccine to neighbouring countries. The most recent recipients are Sri Lanka which received five lakh vials on Thursday and Bahrain, which received one lakh. “These supplies are based on requests from these countries,” said Srivastava.
Meanwhile, commercial exports are also picking up, with Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Canada and Mongolia among the countries which have already placed orders. Brazil, Morocco and Bangladesh have already imported their first batch of Covishield vaccines.