The World Health Organisation is likely to approve the Russian Covid-19 vaccine Sputnik V in September-October, Kirill Dmitriev of the Russian Direct Investment Fund told India Today.
While Russia’s Gamaleya National Research Institute of Epidemiology and Microbiology has developed the vaccine, the RDIF is marketing it globally.
In an exclusive interview, Kirill Dmitriev, the CEO of the Russian Direct Investment Fund told India Today, “We are expecting the approval from WHO to Sputnik V this fall. We are expecting it to come in September or October. There is plenty of positive information out there already about the vaccine. Already, 67 countries with 3.5 billion people have approved Sputnik as the data has been exceptionally positive.”
On the collaboration with the Serum Institute of India to produce 300 million doses of Sputnik V vaccine in the country, the RDIF CEO said “Our key focus now is to provide the vaccine to many countries that can register Sputnik V and a partnership with Serum will be a major breakthrough in the joint production capability.”
“The first batch of Sputnik V vaccine is expected to be produced at SII’s facilities in September. The parties intend to produce over 300 million doses of the vaccine in India per year,” RDIF CEO Kirill Dmitriev told India Today.
He added: “With the tie-up with Serum Institute, we are talking about making 300 million doses or more a year. This is going to be a great contribution to the Indian vaccine-making effort, but also, after Indian demand has been met, there will be an opportunity to supply to other countries the Sputnik V product that will be manufactured by the Serum Institute of India.”
“We have an agreement with six other leading producers in India. Many of them are already producing the vaccines and the quality has been confirmed by Gamaleya Institute. Some of them are going to launch their commercial production next month,” Kirill Dmitriev said.
“We are working very closely with manufacturers for Sputnik V in India. The production is being ramped up but definitely Serum joining this production consortium is a major step that will lead to a major production increase for the Sputnik V vaccine,” he said.
So far, over 10 countries have published studies on the safety and efficacy of the Sputnik V vaccine data, with India being the largest hub of its production in the world. The real-world vaccination data shows Sputnik V as a safe vaccine with some side effects that are rare. Data also shows that it works against mutations as well.
“As part of the technology transfer process, SII has already received cell and vector samples from the Gamaleya Center. With their import approved by the Drug Controller General of India (DCGI), the cultivation process has begun,” said the statement released earlier.