PM Thanks “Dear Friend Scott Morrison” After Australia Recognises Covaxin


PM Thanks 'Dear Friend Scott Morrison' After Australia Recognises Covaxin

It is an important step forward in India-Australia partnership, said PM Modi (FILE)

New Delhi:

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday thanked his Australian counterpart Scott Morrison for recognition of India’s Covaxin for establishing a traveller’s vaccination status in the country. “It is an important step forward in the post-COVID partnership between India and Australia,” he tweeted.

Australia added India’s Covaxin vaccine and China’s BBIBP-CorV vaccine, made by Sinopharm, to a growing list of accepted vaccines as it eased its international border restrictions earlier in the day for the first time during the coronavirus pandemic, allowing some of its vaccinated public to travel freely.

This comes amid millions of Indians complaining of travel struggles as the vaccine has not been recognised for international travel by several countries.

The Prime Minister on Sunday, nudging WHO for its approval to Covaxin, said India is ready to produce over 5 billion Covid vaccine doses next year to help the world in the fight against the pandemic.

“I want to tell you all that India is ready to produce more than 5 billion vaccine doses for the world next year…Therefore, it is necessary that Indian vaccines are approved by the WHO at the earliest,” he said at a G20 summit session in Romw.

WHO Chief Scientist Soumya Swaminathan said after a meeting on Tuesday that its independent experts had sought “additional clarifications” from Covaxin maker Bharat Biotech for a final assessment on November 3.

The global agency has been deliberating on data supplied by the vaccine maker since early July but has said it cannot “cut corners” in making a decision.

Bharat Biotech’s Covaxin and AstraZeneca and Oxford University’s Covishield are the two widely used vaccines in India.