COVID-19: USISPF welcomes Quad’s commitment to double down on expanding vaccine supply

Lalit K Jha
·3-min read

Washington, Mar 13 (PTI) An India-centric top American business advocacy group on Saturday welcomed the commitment of the Quad leadership to double down on expanding vaccine supply to put an end to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi and three other Quad leaders on Friday decided to join forces to expand safe, affordable and effective vaccine production and equitable access in a bid to speed up economic recovery and benefit global health in the wake of the deadly COVID-19 pandemic.

The US-India Strategic and Partnership Forum (USISPF) said that the first leaders’ summit of the Quadrilateral Framework has witnessed unprecedented levels of cooperation to address some of the most pressing challenges that the global economy faces today.

“We welcome the leaders’ commitment to double down on expanding vaccine supply to put an end to the pandemic. It is one of the many tangible steps that the four countries will take to maintain a thriving and resilient Indo-Pacific region.

“To that end, the formation of a critical technologies working group to drive innovation in the region, along with leadership to prioritise climate security, infrastructure investment, counterterrorism and maritime security are necessary and timely actions,” it said in a statement.

The USISPF said it believes that a strong US-India bilateral partnership, with commercial and strategic alignment will be key to ensuring the durability of the Quad framework and fulfilling efforts to make economic recovery a reality.

Meanwhile, the US Chamber of Commerce said in a statement on Friday that it welcomes the Quad countries' decision to join hands in advancing access to high-quality, affordable vaccines for the world.

America's long-standing, bipartisan policy support for intellectual property, research and development, and public-private partnerships will be instrumental in achieving widespread global vaccination and an end to the pandemic, it said.

'The combined innovative capacity, manufacturing prowess, and logistical skills of the four countries are more than a match for the COVID-19 pandemic. The chamber will continue to assist in this effort and lay the foundation for a sustainable global economic recovery,' it added.

In a joint statement issued after the first virtual summit of the Quad leaders, US President Joe Biden, Prime Minister Modi, Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga recognised that none of them could be safe as long as the coronavirus pandemic continues to spread.

“Building on the progress our countries have achieved on health security, we will join forces to expand safe, affordable and effective vaccine production and equitable access, to speed economic recovery and benefit global health.

“With steadfast commitment to the health and safety of our own people, we also recognise that none of us can be safe as long as the pandemic continues to spread,” the leaders said in the Quad Leaders’ Joint Statement: “The Spirit of the Quad”.

The four leaders said they will combine their nations’ medical, scientific, financing, manufacturing and delivery, and development capabilities and establish a vaccine expert working group to implement our path-breaking commitment to safe and effective vaccine distribution. PTI LKJ AAR CPS AKJ CPS