Serum Institute of India CEO Adar Poonawalla on Monday said that vaccine manufacturing is a specialized process and it is not possible to ramp up production overnight while noting that the company has received total orders of over 26 crore doses, of which it has supplied more than 15 crore doses.
In a statement, he said they have got 100 per cent advance of Rs 1732.50 crore from the central government for the next tranche of 11 crore doses in the next few months.
He said SII has been working closely with the central government since April last year and has got all kinds of support, be it scientific, regulatory and financial"
"Amongst multiple reports it is important that correct information be shared with the public", Poonawalla said in a tweet and attached his statement.
Poonawalla said he would like to clarify certain things since his comments "may have been misinterpreted".
"First of all, vaccine manufacturing is a specialized process, it is therefore not possible to ramp up production overnight. We also need to understand that the population of India is huge and to produce enough doses for all adults is not an easy task. Even the most advanced countries and companies are struggling in relatively smaller populations. Secondly, we have been working closely with the Government of India since April last year. We have got all kinds of support, be it scientific, regulatory and financial," he said.
"As of today, we received total orders of over 26 crore doses, of which we supplied more than 15 crore doses. We have also got 100 per cent advance of Rs 1732.50 crore by Gol for the next tranche of 11 crore doses in the next few months. Another 11 crore doses would be supplied in the second channel for states and private hospitals in the next few months," he added.
He said every effort is being made to make vaccines available in quickest possible time.
"Lastly, we understand that everyone wants the vaccine to be available in the quickest possible time. That is our endeavor too and we are making every effort to achieve that. We shall work even harder and strengthen India's fight against COVID-19", he said.
The Serum Institute of India (SII) supported the Health Ministry's statement in which it said that media reports alleging that Centre has not placed any fresh order for COVID-19 Vaccines are "incorrect and not based on facts".
"We endorse this statement, and the authenticity of the information. We have been working closely with the Government of India for the past year and thank it for its support. We remain committed to ramping up our vaccine production to save every life we can," SII said in a tweet.
The Pune-based Serum Institute manufactures Covishield vaccine against COVID-19. It has been developed by Oxford University and AstraZeneca.