New Delhi: Amid the worsening COVID-19 situation in the country, the government has waived the import duty on Remdesivir API, injections and specific inputs.
The import of Remdesivir Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients (API), injections and specific inputs have been made import duty-free till October 31 amid the ongoing surge in COVID-19 cases in the country, the government has informed.
Taking to Twitter, the Ministry of Finance on Tuesday shared a notification that said that the central government has exempted Remdesivir Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients, Beta Cyclodextrin (SBEBCD) used in the manufacture of Remdesivir - subject to the condition that the importer follows the procedure set out in the Customs (Import of Goods at Concessional Rate of Duty) Rules, 2017 - and Injection Remdesivir from the whole of the duty of customs leviable on their import into India.
Govt waives import duty on Remdesivir API, injections and specific inputs. pic.twitter.com/hTymtccpW8
— Ministry of Finance (@FinMinIndia) April 20, 2021
Commerce and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal tweeted, "In line with PM Narendra Modi`s priority to ensure affordable medical care for COVID-19 patients, imports of Remdesivir API, injection and specific inputs have been made import duty free. This should increase supply and reduce cost thus providing relief to patients."
Amid the shortage of Remdesivir in the wake of a spike in COVID-19 infections in the country, seven major pharmaceutical companies have already reduced the maximum retail price (MRP) of the anti-viral drug.
As per the revised price of major brands of Remdesivir injection 100mg/Vial`, Cadila Healthcare Ltd`s REMDAC which was earlier available at Rs 2,800, has been reduced to Rs 899.
The price of Syngene International Ltd`s RemWin is reduced to Rs 2,450 from Rs 3,950. Dr Reddy`s Laboratories Ltd`s REDYX will be available at Rs 2,700 instead of Rs 5,400.
Cipla Ltd`s CIPREMI will now be available at Rs 3,000 instead of Rs 4,000, Maylan Pharmaceuticals Pvt Ltd`s DESREM will be available at Rs 3400 instead of Rs 4,800, Jubilant Generics Ltd`s JUBI-R will be available at Rs 3,400 instead of Rs 4,700 and Hetero Healthcare Ltd`s COVIFOR will be available at Rs 3,490 instead of Rs 5,400.
In view of the worsening COVID-19 situation, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday addressed the nation on the coronavirus situation urging the states to not impose lockdown measures and that it should be the last resort.
PM Modi also said that the Centre is working in tandem with the state governments to avail them the requisite amount of vaccines, oxygen and medicines.
"This time the demand for oxygen has spiked in many parts. We are working on this. Centre, states and private sectors are trying to ensure every needy patient gets oxygen. New oxygen plants in states, using industrial oxygen for medical use, Oxygen Express - we are doing everything," he said.
While on vaccines, the Prime Minister said that India is the world's cheapest vaccine provider. "Vaccines in line with India's cold storage facilities. The regulatory processes and approvals have been fast-tracked," PM said.