Gujarat Exclusive > National-World > Bharat Biotech says supplying Covaxin to govt for Rs 150 per dose not sustainable

Bharat Biotech says supplying Covaxin to govt for Rs 150 per dose not sustainable

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With the Centre likely to start procuring 75% of the doses of COVID-19 vaccines manufactured in the country for the national vaccination drive, Covaxin maker Bharat Biotech on Tuesday said that supplying the jabs to the government at Rs 150 per dose is not sustainable in the long run. The company is demanding freedom to charge a higher rate in the private market.

The Hyderabad-based vaccine manufacturer in a statement said, “The supply price of Covaxin to the government of India at Rs 150 per dose, is a non-competitive price and clearly not sustainable in the long run. Hence a higher price in private markets is required to offset part of the costs.”

Bharat Biotech said less than 10 per cent of the total production of Covaxin to date has been supplied to private hospitals, while most of the remaining quantity was supplied to state and Union governments.

“In such a scenario, the weighted average price of Covaxin for all supplies realised by Bharat Biotech is less than Rs 250 per dose. Going forward, 75 per cent of the capacity will be supplied to state and central governments with only 25 per cent going to private hospitals,” the statement added.

Explaining the reasons behind a higher price of Covaxin than other COVID-19 vaccines available in the Indian market, the company said, “Fundamental business reasons ranging from low procurement volumes, high distribution costs and retail margins among few others contribute to higher pricing of Covaxin.”

India’s COVID-19 vaccination drive

Until now, the Indian government has provided emergency use authorisation to three vaccines against COVID-19. This includes Covishield, Covaxin and Sputnik V. So far, India has administered 25.90 crore doses of the vaccines. Of it, 21.01 crore are first doses, whereas 4.88 crore are second doses of the vaccines.

The government intends to start vaccinating 1 crore people daily from mid-July onwards. The Centre has announced that it will complete the vaccination drive against the deadly virus in the country by December end.

 

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