India is the biggest vaccine manufacturer in the world, producing more than 60 percent of all vaccines sold across the globe. As a manufacturing hub, India can churn out vaccines, developed either by Western pharmaceutical companies or domestically, faster and cheaper than most other countries.
But emergency-use approval by India’s national government comes with restrictions on global distribution. The Serum Institute of India is allowed to produce the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine for use within the country, but the government has barred them for export until at least March or April — meaning other countries may have to source their Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine doses from other production sites.
Meanwhile, Russia has signed agreements with four Indian manufacturers to produce about 300 million doses of the Russian-developed Sputnik V coronavirus vaccine, according to Russian officials quoted by state media.