Urging the government to provide incentives to vaccine manufacturers to increase the production of COVID-19 vaccines in the country, industry body FICCI has recommended financing vaccine makers under a production linked incentive (PLI) type scheme to support the vaccine manufacturers.
Noting that there is an urgent and critical need to encourage vaccine manufacturers to substantially augment their capacities for production, it said: "Since the cost of vaccines has been capped by the government, the vaccine manufacturers need to be provided with appropriate incentives for ramping up the production."
It also said that many states have been facing the shortage of COVID vaccines over the past few days, including locations in Punjab, Rajasthan, Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, Jharkhand and Bihar, compelling state governments to scale down their daily vaccination targets.
India intends to vaccinate the priority population of 30 crore by August 2021. Given that 10.85 crore people have received at least the first dose of COVID vaccination and going with the current rate of 30 lakh vaccinations per day, there is a need for more than 38 crore doses, of two dose vaccines, to fully vaccinate this priority group, FICCI said.
It further said that the government also needs to make provision for immediate and sufficient grants and subsidies, through the Government of India's COVID Funds, for those manufacturers that are already developing or manufacturing COVID vaccines in the country.
FICCI, on behalf of the industry, has assured its complete support to the government for battling together against this unprecedented crisis and keeping the economy from being adversely impacted, the statement said.