India has welcomed US support for relaxation in the norms of the agreement on TRIPS to ensure quick and affordable access to COVID vaccines and medicines for developing countries. In a statement, the External Affairs Ministry said, India is hopeful that with a consensus based approach, the waiver can be approved quickly at the WTO. It added that the waiver is an important step for enabling rapid scaling up of manufacture and timely availability of affordable COVID-19 vaccines and essential medical products.
In October last year, in view of COVID-19 pandemic, India and South Africa had proposed in WTO for temporary waiver from certain provisions of the Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) agreement. As a result of proactive outreach by India and other like-minded countries, the proposal has received the support of more than 120 countries. During his recent phone call with the US President Joe Biden, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had informed him about India’s initiative at the WTO which is aimed for the benefit of humanity.