India will produce about 300 million doses of the Russian Sputnik V vaccine against coronavirus disease (Covid-19) next year, the head of the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF), which has partnered with Dr Reddy’s Laboratories Limited and pharmaceutical company Hetero for clinical trials and distribution of the two-shot vaccine in India, he said.
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“In India, we have agreements with four major manufacturers. India will produce about 300 million doses or more of the vaccine for us next year, ”said Kirill Dmitriev, CEO of RDIF, as told by the Tass news agency. “Russian Sputnik V will be actively produced around the world and we see that it is built on a secure platform based on human adenovirus,” Dmitriev said in an interview with Rossiya 24 television.
The Russian embassy in India said Friday, citing Dmitriev, that Russia is testing the first samples of Sputnik V produced in India.
On Thursday, President Vladimir Putin said the vaccine was “over 95% effective”. Developed by the Gamaleya Institute of Epidemiology and Microbiology, Sputnik V is claimed by Russia as the “world’s first Covid-19 vaccine” and was registered by the country’s health ministry in August.
Read also | Russian Sputnik V vaccine over 95% effective: Vladimir Putin
In November, during a virtual BRICS summit hosted by Russia, Putin said Sputnik V could be produced in both India and China. India and China, along with Russia, are members of the five BRICS nations, while Brazil and South Africa are the remaining two.
Read also | India could start producing Russian Covid-19 Sputnik V vaccine, Putin says
India is the second most affected country in the world, behind the United States, with Covid-19 cases exceeding 9.9 million, and Russia has the fourth highest infection count. The largest country in the world has a workload in excess of 2.7 million, according to a tally maintained by worldometers.
According to Johns Hopkins University, the number of Covid-19 cases worldwide approaches 75 million cases and stands at 74,952,221 and there have been 1,662,127 related deaths to date.
(With agency input)