The deployment will begin after the necessary clearances over the next few days, according to Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories.

India took a step closer to a third vaccine in its COVID-19 vaccination campaign when Russia’s first shipment of Sputnik V landed in Hyderabad on Saturday.

“We are pleased to announce that the first shipment of 150,000 doses of Sputnik V vaccine has landed in Hyderabad from Russia,” said CEO-API and Services Deepak Sapra of Dr. Reddy Laboratories.

It comes at a time when India launched vaccination program for people aged 18-44 – so far those 45 and over were covered – even as some states reported a vaccine shortage.

Sputnik V will join Covishield and the native Covaxin which have been in use in the country since January.

Also Read: Imported Sputnik V Will Be Available This Quarter: Dr. Reddy’s

Based on the human adenoviral vector platform, the Russian vaccine received emergency use authorization in India last month. The efficiency of Sputnik V has been reported to be 91.6%.

Supply chain

A statement from Dr Reddy’s, who is the Russian Direct Investment Fund’s marketing partner for Sputnik V in India, said the deployment of the shipment would be subject to [getting] the necessary authorizations, which will be processed over the next few days. “This initial amount will be used in different channels as a pilot to align our supply chain for the wider deployment of the immunization program. The following shipments will arrive in the coming weeks, ”said Mr Sapra.

As some company executives recently said, the vaccine is expected to join the vaccination schedule by this month. But clarity on the price at which Sputnik V will be made available has not yet emerged. Discussions about it were ongoing, sources said. The two-dose vaccine cost around $ 10 for an injection in other markets around the world.

The Central Committee for Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBIC) was among the first to announce the arrival of the Sputnik V cargo. Russia, ”Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said this was an appropriate timely response and the need of the hour.

Foreign Ministry spokesman Arindam Bagchi said Sputnik V will add to India’s arsenal to fight the pandemic. “This third option will increase our vaccination capacity and speed up our vaccination campaign,” he tweeted. Millions of doses are expected to follow and there are plans to manufacture the vaccine in India as well, including for exports to other countries.

RDIF has already formed manufacturing partnerships with at least five companies in India to produce around 850 million doses of the vaccine per year.