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Indian vaccines land in Somalia

Indian vaccines land in Somalia (Image courtesy: Twitter/@DrSJaishankar)

India airlifted Covid-19 vaccines to Somalia on Saturday as a part of its Vaccine Maitri initiative to assist countries in their fight against the coronavirus pandemic. The information about the consignment was shared by the External Affairs Minister, S Jaishankar through his Twitter account. He tweeted, "Reaching across the Indian Ocean. Made-in-India vaccines arriving in Somalia."

Under the Vaccine Maitri initiative, India-made coronavirus vaccines are being provided to friendly countries. Twenty-five countries have already received Made-in India vaccines and another 49 nations are in the queue.

There is a growing demand for Indian vaccines as the country has emerged as the “pharmacy of the world” amid the huge shortage that has developed for the shots worldwide.

Besides, Indian vaccines are much cheaper and easier to handle as they can be stored at ordinary refrigeration temperatures of 2 to 8 degrees Celsius making them affordable for developing countries. The western-made Pfizer and Moderna vaccines, on the other hand, are very expensive and have to be stored at -80 degrees Celsius and require expensive cold-chain infrastructure that does not exist in most countries.