From India with love: Covishield vaccines reach Sri Lanka
New Delhi, Jan 28: 5,00,000 doses of the Covishield vaccine from India have reached Sri Lanka. A dependable partner, a reliable friend. Made in India vaccines reach Sri Lanka now, External Affairs Minister, S Jaishankar said.
The consignments were sent to the island nation as a "gift" from India.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi had made a commitment to his Sri Lankan counterpart Mahinda Rajapaksa during a virtual summit in September last that India will provide all possible support to the island nation to minimise the health and economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic.
So far, India has sent consignments of coronavirus vaccines under grant assistance to Bhutan, Maldives, Nepal, Bangladesh, Myanmar, Mauritius, and Seychelles.
Last week, India began commercial exports and sent two million doses each to Brazil and Morocco.
India is also sending coronavirus vaccines as commercial supplies to Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Bangladesh, and Myanmar.
In a major announcement, India on January 19 said it would send COVID-19 vaccines under grant assistance to Bhutan, Maldives, Bangladesh, Nepal, Myanmar, and Seychelles, and supplies to Sri Lanka, Afghanistan, and Mauritius will commence after confirmation of necessary regulatory clearances.
India is one of the world's biggest drugmakers, and an increasing number of countries have already approached it for procuring coronavirus vaccines.
India has already rolled out a massive coronavirus vaccination drive under which two vaccines, Covishield and Covaxin, are being administered to frontline health workers across the country.
While Oxford-AstraZeneca's Covishield is being manufactured by the Serum Institute, Covaxin is being produced by Bharat Biotech.
India had earlier supplied hydroxychloroquine, Remdesivir, and paracetamol tablets, as well as diagnostic kits, ventilators, masks, gloves and other medical supplies to a large number of countries to help them deal with the pandemic.