The US has conveyed to India that it understands the country's pharmaceutical requirements and promised to give the matter a due consideration.
US President Biden's administration also added that the current difficulty in the export of critical raw materials needed to manufacture Covid-19 vaccines is mainly due to an Act that forces American companies to prioritise domestic consumption, reports the NDTV citing the Press Trust of India.
In recent weeks, India's Ambassador to the US Taranjit Singh Sandhu has been taking up the matter with the Biden administration officials. During his meetings with the US interlocutors, the top Indian diplomat has sought a smooth supply of certain inputs for production of Covid-19 vaccines in India.
Officials from the two sides have held discussions to ease the supply of critical materials, considering their increased requirements in both the US and India.
President Joe Biden and his predecessor Donald Trump had invoked the war-time Defence Production Act (DPA) that leaves US companies with no option but to give priority to the production of Covid-19 vaccines and Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs) for domestic production to combat the deadly pandemic in the US.
Since the US has ramped up the production of Covid-19 vaccines mostly by Pfizer and Moderna so as to meet the goal of vaccinating its entire population by 4 July, the suppliers of its raw material, which is in high demand globally and sought after by major Indian manufacturers, are being forced to provide it only for domestic manufacturers.
Among other things, the DPA, which was enacted in 1950, authorises the US President to require businesses to accept and prioritise contracts for materials deemed necessary for national defence, regardless of a loss incurred on business. The issue received global attention in recent days after Adar Poonawalla, CEO of the Serum Institute of India (SII), tagged President Biden in a tweet. The Serum Institute of India is the world's largest producer of Covid-19 vaccine.
"Respected @POTUS, if we are to truly unite in beating this virus, on behalf of the vaccine industry outside the US, I humbly request you to lift the embargo of raw material exports out of the US so that vaccine production can ramp up. Your administration has the details," he tweeted.
Neither the US nor India has released details of the raw material that it is asking from the US.