India to import 4,50,000 vials of Remdesivir
First Consignment of 75000 vials of Remdesivir will reach India today
To meet the demands of the growing number of coronavirus infected people, India has started importing the vital drug Remdesivir from other countries to ease out the shortage of Remdesivir in the country. The first consignment of 75000 vials is expected to reach India on Friday.
HLL Lifecare Ltd, a Government of India owned company has ordered 4,50,000 vials of Remdesivir from M/s Gilead Sciences Inc USA and Egyptian Pharma Company, M/s Eva Pharma.
It is expected that Gilead Sciences Inc. USA will dispatch 75,000 to 1,00,000 vials in the next one or two days. Further one hundred thousand quantities will also be supplied before or by May 15. EVA pharma will supply approximately 10,000 vials initially followed by 50,000 vials every 15 days or till July.
In the meanwhile, the government has ramped up the production capacity of Remdesivir in the country.
As on April 27, the production capacity of the seven licensed domestic manufacturers increased from 38 lakh vials per month to 1.03 crore vials per month. Total 13.73 lakh vials have been supplied across the country by the drug companies in the last seven days (April 21-28, 2021).
The daily supply has gone up from 67,900 vials on April 11 to 2.09 lakh vials on April 28, 2021. An advisory was issued by the Ministry of Home Affairs to states and UTs to facilitate smooth movement of Remdesivir supplies.
The government also prohibited the export of Remdesivir to enhance its availability in India. To ensure affordability of the injection among the masses, NPPA on April 17, 2021 released the revised maximum retail price thus bringing down the cost of all the major brands to below Rs 3500 per vial.
In order to facilitate higher production and availability of Remdesivir, the Department of Revenue vide Notification 27/2021-Customs dated 20th April exempted the whole of the duty of Customs on Remdesivir injection, its API and Beta cyclodextrin used in manufacture of Remdesivir, till October 31, 2021.