India is developing about 20 more vaccines against the coronavirus and plans to roll them out in the coming months, the Health Minister, Harsh Vardhan, said on Monday.
Earlier in the day, Indian Ambassador in Moscow Venkatesh Varma said that the country might approve the use of Russia’s Sputnik V coronavirus vaccine in the next few weeks.
“At least, 18-20 vaccines are in pre-clinical, clinical and advanced stages. Expect them in the coming months,” Vardhan said.
The minister added that India would soon start to deliver its COVID-19 vaccines to about 25 countries.
On January 3, India’s health authorities authorised two COVID-19 vaccines for emergency use, including the Covishield vaccine, developed by UK drugmaker AstraZeneca and Oxford University and produced by Serum Institute of India, and Covaxin, developed by Indian biotechnology firm Bharat Biotech.
The number of the vaccinated Indians reached 8.2 million, according to the health ministry.
India, with about 1.4 billion people, ranks second in the world in the number of people infected with the coronavirus.
According to the health ministry, the country had confirmed more than 10.9 million COVID-19 cases, with 155,732 deaths.