PM Modi appreciated the EU’s swift mobilization of support to India’s COVID-19 response

In a bid to ensure the scaling up the vaccine production for equitable and global access and save lives Prime Minister Narendra Modi during the India-European Union Leaders’ Summit on Saturday requested EU’s support for a TRIPS waiver on vaccine production-related patents.

In the Special Virtual Media Briefing following the India-EU Leaders’ Summit, Secretary (West), Ministry of External Affairs, Vikas Swarup noted that cooperation in vaccine production was discussed with priority.

“Each and every leader at the Summit underlined the need for greater cooperation between India and the EU for ensuring vaccine production, including a proposal from one of the EU leaders for a partnership with India, in the Indo Pacific for ensuring vaccine access,” said Swarup.

"Prime Minister invited the European Union to support the TRIPS waiver, which we have put forward together with South Africa so that they can be equitable vaccine access for the entire world. And as the US has already supported it, we will be watching the evolving EU position on this particular issue,” Swarup stated.

Prime Minister Modi appreciated the EU’s swift response for mobilizing support to India’s COVID-19 response, he informed.

“As you would recall, India had kept its supply chains open during the first wave of COVID-19 last year and supplied essential drugs and masks to several EU countries. The EU’s current assistance is an example of trusted partners supporting each other in times of need,” the MEA Secretary (West) explained.

Earlier, on Friday, Prime Minister Modi in a telephonic conversation with his Australian counterpart Scott Morrison had sought the latter's support for the initiative taken at the World Trade Organisation (WTO) by India and South Africa to seek a temporary waiver under TRIPS for Covid-19 vaccines.

This request by India to Australia had come barely a day after the US announced its support for waiving Intellectual Property (IP) protections on COVID-19 vaccines to help end the pandemic. The US had said then that it will actively participate in WTO negotiations to make that happen.