US President Joe Biden and Europe are blocking vaccine raw material supplies to India. For What? To benefit a couple of US and European Pharmaceutical companies and mainly China by selling expensive COVID-19 vaccines to US and European citizens.
India made the cheapest vaccines and supplied millions of vaccines to over 128 countries around the world free of cost. India’s action was inspired by humanity despite China making windfall gains after spreading Chinese Corona Virus in the world and thereafter gaining by supplying masks, ventilators and now vaccines. However this Indian action was seen as a threat by China.
US President Joe Biden, whose questionable election victory that was mired with accusations of election frauds and Chinese support, wouldn’t let India hurt the market for Pfizer and others besides that supported democrats in the elections. As per a report published in October 2020, US Pharma Industry contributed Democrats and Joe Biden in US Elections 2020.
Earlier in the day, the White House refrained from answering questions on the export ban on COVID-19 raw materials and gave evasive answers and expressed ignorance.
Asked about the SII’s request for the supply of raw materials, both Dr Anthony Fauci, Director at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and Dr Andy Slacitt, White House COVID-19 response senior advisor said that they do not have an answer yet.
I don’t, I’m sorry… we could get back to you on that. I’m sure. But I don’t have anything for you right now, Dr Fauci said.
Let me get back to you. Suffice to say we are taking very seriously the global threat from the pandemic. We’ve been a leader in the funding of COVAX, have done several bilateral transfers of vaccines, and are looking very hard and taking very seriously all of these complex issues, we’ll get back to you on specifics, Dr Slavitt said.
India has the worlds largest Vaccine production setup. With the implementation of the Defense Production Act, the US pharma companies cannot export either the medicines or the raw materials needed to make those medicines to other nations, including India.
Instead of helping India with the supply of critical raw material supplies for vaccines that can produce the cheapest vaccines and supply worldwide, Joe Biden has ensured that only a couple of US and European companies that support Leftist Liberals remain in the business and they can earn windfall profits during this pandemic of Chinese Corona Virus. Indian Vaccine For Chinese Virus : More Countries Approach India For Vaccine Against Chinese Virus While Chinese Vaccines Are Being Rejected
Notably, the Pune-based Serum Institute of India (SII) is the world’s largest vaccine manufacturer by volume and is widely seen as a key player in the production of doses to protect the global population against the Chinese Corona virus. But in the wake of the Defense Production Act, the pharma company, which is the principal supplier of COVID vaccines for the Indian government, is reportedly facing a shortage of raw materials critical for vaccine production.
As per Adar Poonawalla, CEO of Pune-based Serum Institute of India (SII), the production of Covid vaccines in the country has been impacted as Europe and the US have banned the export of critical raw material.
On 16-April 2021, Adar Poonawalla via his twitter handle appealed US President Joe Biden to lift the embargo of raw material exports out of the U.S. so that vaccine production can ramp up. He tweeted, “Respected @POTUS, if we are to truly unite in beating this virus, on behalf of the vaccine industry outside the U.S., I humbly request you to lift the embargo of raw material exports out of the U.S. so that vaccine production can ramp up. Your administration has the details.”
Responding to a question about difficulties being faced by the SII in ramping up production of doses of Covid-19 vaccine, Adar Poonawalla said, “I wish I could go there and protest in the US myself to say that you are holding back critical raw material that are required for Covax and so many vaccine manufacturers in India and other parts of the world.”
“That is one thing we are really struggling with in the short term because we need this now. We don’t need it after six months or a year because by that time, we’d have developed other suppliers,” Adar Poonawalla said.
The SII is not looking to import raw material from China given quality issues and other supply constraints, he said.
In March, Poonawalla had told a World Bank panel that the US ban on raw material exports, by invoking the Defense Production Act, would cause global shortages. Serum has an alliance with US company Novavax as well (besides AstraZeneca) to make and market the vaccine in India and other countries. Novavax CEO recently raised this concern in the US. Industry insiders said that vaccine-makers have some inventories, but the situation could impact Novavax supplies if the raw material supply issue is not resolved soon
The US action is to ensure local supplies for US vaccine-makers like Pfizer, Johnson and Johnson, and Moderna, said industry-watchers.
Concern was also expressed by WHO’s chief scientist, Soumya Swaminathan, who pointed to the shortage of vials, glass, plastic and stoppers (vial caps). “There is a lack of supply which is exacerbated by export controls.”
Apart from Covid-19 vaccines, other antidotes,too, could be impacted as non-critical materials such as single-use bioreactor bags, beta propiolactone and thimerosal, are also imported, he said, adding that it would however be “temporary”.
With the implementation of the Defense Production Act, the US pharma companies cannot export either the medicines or the raw materials needed to make those medicines to other nations, including India.
Last year in November, American pharmaceutical company Pfizer cut short its vaccine production target by half, citing a shortage of raw material. Pfizer had earlier planned to roll out over 1.2 billion shots in 2021 but reduced the target by half due to raw material shortage in the United States and Europe.
Vaccines typically contain antiviral agents, antiseptic liquids, sterile water and some elements of virus DNA that are important to create antibodies.
The raw materials that SII imports from the US include filters, bags, and adjuvant. An adjuvant is a substance that is used to increase the efficacy of a vaccine and helps the immune system generate antibodies. The disruption in the supply of adjuvant could hamper the production of vaccines for a longer period.
Biden has promised to administer 100 million vaccination shots in his first 100 days in office. The government aims to buy 600 million vaccines for its 300 million population, which has put stress on the American raw material companies given the demand from all across the world. It recently decided to buy an additional 100 million doses of each of the two – Pfizer and Moderna. This has increased the total vaccine order for the US by 50 per cent, from 400 million to 600 million.
To accelerate vaccine production for the US population, President Joe Biden invoked the Defense Production Act and curbed the export of raw material.
The Biden administration granted emergency approval to Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine last month. After Pfizer and Moderna, J&J will also help achieve the vaccine production target by adding 100 million vaccines by summer. However, as the company is behind on manufacturing and would not be able to fulfill its promise to deliver 100 million doses by June, the Biden administration — by invoking the Defense Production Act — brokered a partnership between J&J and its arch-rival pharma company Merck & Co to safely manufacture the J&J vaccine. This rare partnership is expected to bolster the vaccine manufacturing capabilities of the US. Under the new arrangement, Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine manufacturing facilities will now begin to operate 24/7. Using two Merk facilities, J&J will fulfill production and packaging needs.
“We’ll continue to use the Defense Production Act to expedite critical materials in vaccine production, such as equipment, machinery, and supplies,” Biden has said.
Biden also directed his COVID-19 Response Coordinator to work with the Health and Human Services Department to increase the total vaccine supply for Americans.
Here is what one dose of each vaccine will cost in India (in INR and USD):
Pfizer had applied for “accelerated approval” in India, but withdrew its application last month, against the backdrop of the Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) insisting on the company conducting a ‘bridging trial’. A bridging trial would have demonstrated the safety, immunogenicity and efficacy in the local population, as opposed to the drug regulator having to consider data from trials conducted abroad.
Bridging trials for Pfizer Vaccine were necessary to establish efficacy of vaccines & other medicines tested on western populations behaving in different ways for people of Indian genetic makeup who eat Indian diets, and have other characteristics. Why did Pfizer shy away from bridging trials in India?
As per recent reports, The US is putting an immediate pause on the rollout of Johnson & Johnson’s single-dose COVID-19 vaccine, citing reports of blood clots in six people who received the shot.
The people who developed the clots were all women between 18 and 48 years old, and they experienced the adverse reaction six to 13 days after their vaccinations, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Food and Drug Administration.
Points to Ponder
Why is Joe Biden forcing untested, very expensive US Vaccines on US citizens when tested an very cheap vaccines are being produced by India? Why is Joe Biden preventing raw material supplies to India for vaccine manufacturing when India has already sent millions of vaccines worldwide free of cost. Is the only reason Joe Biden wants to sell expensive Pfizer, Moderna and J&J vaccines in the US to reward these companies for helping him in the election campaign?
Who will be more benefitted by cutting raw material supplies to India? US companies or China? Isn’t Joe Biden helping China by indirectly to continue its policy of debt trap diplomacy to spread its influence on more countries around the world?
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