Fauci: US will consider sending AZ vaccine to Covid-hit India

Coronavirus Priority to vaccinate Americans first says US on export ban on vaccine raw materials

"And I believe you will see shortly that all these things that we're talking about are on the table, and we will be moving towards that", he said.

Adar Poonawalla, chief executive of Serum Institute of India, a vaccine manufacturer, appealed to Mr. Biden in mid-April to "lift the embargo of raw material exports out of the U.S.so that vaccine production can ramp up".

India's crematoriums and burial grounds are being overwhelmed by the devastating new surge of infections tearing through the populous country with terrifying speed, depleting the supply of life-saving oxygen to critical levels and leaving patients to die while waiting in line to see doctors.

Others such as US Congressman Raja Krishnamoorthi urged the Biden administration to release unused vaccines to India.

The United States has around 30 million doses of the low-priced AstraZeneca vaccine that are not approved for use in the country, and Fauci said the idea of sending them to India will be "something that is up for active consideration".

Experts have long warned that no one will be safe from Covid-19 until everyone is - including those in the developing world, making it in the global interest for wealthier countries eager to move past the pandemic to help large, lower-income nations like India to vaccinate their populations. Earlier, a group of over 170 world leaders and Nobel Prize winners US President Joe Biden to support a waiver proposing to suspend rules of intellectual property rights for Covid-19 vaccines and treatments to boost global vaccination rates.

"Our hearts go out to the Indian people in the midst of the horrific COVID-19 outbreak". So as long as the virus is spreading uncontrolled in this country, it can mutate and it can travel beyond our borders.

India, the world's most-populous democracy, is a vital USA partner, especially at a time when relations with China are at a low point.

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Price asserted that the USA playing a "leadership role" in "seeking to contain the virus beyond our borders".

The United States on Thursday defended its restrictions on the export of raw materials needed to manufacture coronavirus vaccines.

During a press briefing, when asked when the Biden administration would decide on India's request to lift the ban, spokesperson Ned Price said that "the United States first and foremost is engaged in an ambitious and effective and, so far, successful effort to vaccinate the American people".

Merkel held out what was perceived in some quarters as a veiled threat on the issue of India calibrating Covid-19 vaccine exports since last month in order to focus on its domestic immunisation programme. And it's why we made the biggest investment in COVAX and we are committed to sharing vaccine supply.

India has been recording more than 3 lakh fresh cases of COVID-19 for the past four days.

Paul did not respond to a Reuters request for comment.

Besides, India has recently approved the Russian Sputnik V vaccine developed by Moscow's Gamaleya Institute.

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