Some shipments have already left while others are in the pipeline including through the Covax facility

The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) on Thursday said that the overseas supply of indigenously made COVID-19 vaccines has resumed. While some shipments have already taken place, others are in the pipeline, including through the COVAX facility.

“Keeping in mind our domestic requirement of vaccines, we have resumed our overseas supply of India made vaccines. Some shipments have already taken place while others are in the pipeline including through the Covax facility,” MEA Spokesperson Arindam Bagchi said during the weekly media briefing.

According to the MEA website, under the Vaccine Maitri Initiative, India has supplied COVID-19 vaccines to 95 countries across geographies, including the smaller and more vulnerable nations in Africa.

India has supplied 663.698 lakh shots of the vaccine out of which 107.15 lakh vaccine doses have been supplied as grants, 357.92 lakh as commercial supplies and 198.628 lakh under the Covax facility.

India had started external supplies of Made in India COVID-19 vaccines under the Vaccine Maitri initiative on January 20 this year.

This was in the form of grants, commercial sales by Indian manufacturers (Serum Institute of India and Bharat Biotech) and through GAVI’s COVAX facility.

The country had, however, halted the supply of vaccines to other countries in order to prioritise the requirements of its own people after the second wave of the pandemic in April this year.

India launched what has been described as one of the largest vaccination exercises in the world on January 16 this year.

While the initial stages of the campaign were marked by vaccine availability constraints, manufacturers like the Serum Institute of India (Covishield) and Bharat Biotech (Covaxin) have ramped up production significantly in recent months.