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$40.02 -0.1  -0.2%

Last Trade - 14/05/21

Large Cap
Market Cap £158.37bn
Enterprise Value £178.13bn
Revenue £32.92bn
Position in Universe 40th / 6846

India's vaccinations fall from peak as infections hit record

Fri 16th April, 2021 9:50am
By Krishna N. Das
    NEW DELHI, April 16 (Reuters) - India's daily COVID-19
vaccinations have slowed from their record high early this month
while new infections have set a record in eight of the past nine
days, government data show, underscoring a lack of doses in the
    After giving and selling tens of millions of COVID-19
vaccine doses abroad, India has suddenly found itself short of
shots. It has abruptly changed rules to allow it to fast-track
vaccine imports, having earlier rebuffed foreign drugmakers like
Pfizer  PFE.N .*:nL4N2M22NA
    Vaccinations peaked at 4.5 million doses on April 5 but have
averaged about 3 million a day since then, according to the
government's Co-Win portal to coordinate immunisations.
    The country of 1.35 billion people has reported the most
number of coronavirus cases in the world this month, flooding
hospitals with patients and filling crematoriums and cemeteries
with the dead. Its caseload has widened to 14.3 million, the
most after the United States, with 174,308 deaths.*:nL1N2M908I
    The ferocious second surge, which overtook the pace of the
first in a matter of weeks, had sent people rushing to
vaccination centres, but many centres are now rationing supplies
as output fails to meet demand.
    India is vaccinating only people aged above 45 years, having
started the campaign in the middle of January with health and
then other front-line workers. It has so far administered 115.5
million doses, the most in the world after the United States and
China, though it ranks much lower when accounting for
    Many states have sought an expansion of the inoculation
drive to include all adults as cases rise, but the government
has said doses are "finite", although enough to cover the
identified groups.
    The government said on Friday the country had a stock of
about 30 million doses. Going by India's immunisation trend in
the past week, that will be enough to last 10 days.
    As supplies tighten, India this week gave emergency
authorisation to Russia's Sputnik V vaccine and imports to cover
as many as 125 million people will start this month.
    The government has also urged Pfizer, Moderna  MRNA.O  and
Johnson and Johnson  JNJ.N  to sell their shots to India and has
made rules easier for them.
    India has also allowed biomedical research body Haffkine
Institute, based in the western state of Maharashtra, to produce
the home-grown shot Covaxin as developer Bharat Biotech
struggles to boost its output.
    The AstraZeneca  AZN.L  vaccine, locally made by the Serum
Institute of India (SII), accounts for more than 91% of total
doses given in the country. Production ramp-up at SII, the
world's biggest vaccine maker, has been delayed by a
raw-material shortage.

 (Reporting by Krishna N. Das; additional reporting by Sankalp
Phartiyal; editing by Larry King)
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