Washington, DC – The United States today (April 19) made its position clear on how the Biden administration is considering to handle COVID vaccines on a global scale without directly addressing the raised question about Indian requests for raw materials.
Answering a question on the subject, Jen Psaki, the White House Press Secretary said, “Our focus is on determining the most effective steps that will help get the pandemic under control. We don’t have anything further in terms of next steps or a timeline, but we are considering a range of options.”
India is facing a critical shortage of raw materials necessary to make vaccines. Indian government officials are urging Washington to lift the US embargo on exporting those raw materials.
At the daily briefing, a reporter asked Psaki, if she could provide more details about utterances from Biden administration officials telling India that its request was being considered and would be addressed, “at the earliest.”
Psaki told reporters: “Ambassador Katherine Tai, of course, gave some remarks at a World Trade Organization (WTO) virtual conference last week, and she highlighted a couple of points.”
Labeling those words as “very representative of our view,” Psaki noted the significant one being: “…the significant inequalities we are seeing in access to vaccines between developed and developing countries are completely unacceptable. Extraordinary times require extraordinary leadership, communication, and creativity.”
The White House Press Secretary added: “We are, of course, working with WTO members on a global response to COVID. That response — that includes a number of components, whether it’s $4 billion committed to COVAX, or discussions about how we can aid and assist countries that need help the most.”