US- India Crisis Over Raw Materials Supply for Vaccines

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Washington, DC – The United States continued to use diplomatic language on the subject of raw materials shortage for vaccines manufacturing as India reels under another tsunami wave of COVID cases.

Answering a question from IAT at the daily briefing, Jalina Porter, the Principal Deputy Spokesperson said, “We have continued to work closely with India to facilitate the movement of essential supplies and also address the bottlenecks of their supply chains.”

Jalina Porter, Principal Deputy Spokesperson

Porter promised the US will “continue to collaborate with our partners in India to battle this at the highest level,” as “Secretary Blinken spoke to his counterpart on Tuesday, and we remain deeply engaged with India at all levels as we work to combat this crisis of the pandemic together.”

The answer was in sharp contrast and a toned down version of a day earlier (April 22) by State Department Spokesperson Ned Price who said the US is committed to inoculating Americans “first and foremost” thus putting the supply of raw materials to India on the back burner.

Today (April 23) Porter admitted there was no “specific update to raw materials, but we’ll just reiterate that we understand that the COVID situation in India remains a global concern.”

Expressing the US concern over the raging epidemic in India, Porter added, “As we look to our Indian friends battling this pandemic, we’ll also acknowledge the toll that it’s taking not only on the people of India but as well as all throughout South Asia and, quite frankly, all over the world.”

Earlier the issue hit the headlines as the CEO Adar Poonawala of Indian vaccine manufacturer Serum Institute of India (SII) in a tweet called upon the US President Joe Biden to “lift the embargo” on raw materials supply to India.

India has supplied millions of vaccines to dozens of countries across the globe but is now facing vaccine shortage as a new wave of COVID hits in exponential proportions.

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Tejinder Singh, Editor, India America Today & White House Correspondent

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