India assures PHL of steady supply of anti-Covid drugs

THE Indian government has given assurances that the Philippines will benefit from the vaccine it is now developing to fight the novel coronavirus disease (Covid-19).

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi made the commitment to President Rodrigo R. Duterte during their 25-minute phone conversation on Tuesday evening.

“Prime Minister Modi likewise said that India is ready to extend all possible cooperation to the Philippines and that the Philippines will definitely benefit from the vaccine that India is developing,” Malacañang said in a statement on Wednesday.

India’s leader said they will also provide the country a steady supply of pharmaceutical products used to fight Covid-19.

“Prime Minister Modi assured the supply of affordable medicines and Covid-19 pharmaceutical products to the Philippines, including hydroxychloroquine,” the Palace said.

Hydroxychloroquine is an anti-malarial drug, which is currently part of the Solidarity Trial of the World Health Organization (WHO) of potential drugs which can be used to treat Covid-19.

At least 220 Filipinos are currently participating in the WHO’s clinical trial.

For his part, Duterte lauded the Indian government’s gesture, which he said demonstrated its “commitment to cooperation to good neighbors.”

Duterte and Modi also mutually agreed in providing repatriation assistance for Filipino and Indian nationals affected by the Covid-related lockdowns.

Both leaders have committed to continue strengthening bilateral relations not only on public health concerns like the Covid-19 pandemic, but also on food security.

Image credits: AP/David J. Phillip


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