France backs India, asks G-7 to lift export curbs on vax materials

France has urged the G-7 countries to lift restrictions on export of critical raw materials used in the production of Covid-19 vaccines.

Ahead of the G-7 summit at Cornwall in the UK, French President Emmanuel Macron, during a press conference on Friday said restrictions are blocking production of vaccines in middle-income countries.

He said India and particularly the Serum Institute of India were blocked in its production by restrictions of export of ingredients from the G-7 countries.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson G7 Leaders Summit Day Two. The Prime Minister Boris Johnson chairs the G7 Summit in Carbis Bay, Cornwall. Picture by Andrew Parsons / No 10 Downing Street

“As we know, there have been export bans from several G-7 member countries, which have blocked production in other countries, and sometimes blocked production in middle-income countries, essential for the production of vaccines for poorest countries. I take just one example, India,” Macron said.

“India, and in particular the Serum Institute of India, was blocked in its production by restrictions on the export of ingredients necessary for the production of these vaccines which came from some G-7 economies,” he noted.

The French President confirmed that Paris has decided to put on the table with South Africa for this G7 Summit a proposal that allows them to work on time-and space-limited exemption of this intellectual property.

“We defend fair remuneration of innovation and the respect of intellectual property,”he added.

Before expressing optimism regarding an agreement in this regard at the G7 Summit, the French President said that it is an initial proposal from India and South Africa that “we have worked on, that we still want to work on with the WHO, the WTO and all our partners.”

“In this context, and to complete my response on this subject, we are also defending in the short term the idea that the donation of vaccines by States should be complemented by a donation of vaccines by pharmaceutical laboratories,” said Macron concluding his speech. (INN)

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