It was imperative to freely share medical research, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said

India has said it recognises that universal vaccination is the key to stemming the spread of the virus.

The stark differences in vaccination coverage of low-income countries and advanced countries was of concern and it was critical to address vaccine inequity, Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman has said.

She was speaking at the Plenary Meeting of the International Monetary and Financial Committee of the Board of Governors of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) at the Annual Meetings 2021 held in Washington D.C. on Thursday.

The meeting was attended by Governors/Alternate Governors representing 190-member countries of the IMF.

The discussions at the meeting centered on “vaccinate, calibrate and accelerate” which is the theme of the Managing Director's Global Policy Agenda. The members of the IMFC elaborated the actions and measures taken by member countries to combat COVID-19 and facilitate economic recovery.

Sitharaman urged for greater equity in vaccine access and affordability as the world looked for a faster exit towards recovery and growth.

"It is imperative that we freely share medical research and develop adaptive, responsive, affordable, and accessible health care systems," the Finance Minister added.

She also emphasized the importance of the multilateral approach with the principles of equity and common, but differentiated, responsibilities and capabilities to combat climate change.

It was important to recognize the formidable challenges faced by developing countries in getting access to affordable financing and technology, she added.

Before attending the IMFC Plenary meeting, Sitharaman participated in Restricted Breakfast Meeting of the International Monetary Fund.