US strategic and trade affairs experts feel that US and India will be key to future production of medical supplies to fight Covid-19 crisis.

 

In the United States, every seventh American is seen by an Indian doctor, which will soon be 6:1, signifying the contribution of the diaspora in the American healthcare system. Today, as the world fights the corona pandemic and the US becomes its worst victim, with over 100,000 deaths and counting, health diplomacy has emerged as the new unifier for the two democracies and the driver for an intense partnership promising a big relief to the world with a timely vaccine against the coronavirus.

President Donald Trump has acknowledged India’s role in fighting the corona pandemic for the globe. The US and Indian scientists and health researchers are collaborating intensively to make a breakthrough in producing a vaccine for corona. The US has already identified Indian pharmaceutical companies as one of the partners for mass productions to meet global demands.

While lauding India’s gesture to have allowed the export of 50 million hydroxychloroquine tablets to treat Covid-19 patients in America at his request, Trump on Friday announced that the US would donate ventilators to India. He specially mentioned his “close friend” and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi to the media as he said, “India has been so great and as you know your Prime Minister has been a very good friend of mine. I just got back a short while ago from India and we are very much together,” referring to his visit to New Delhi, Ahmedabad and Agra in February.

White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany was quick to add, “India has been a great partner to the US for quite some time…I am encouraged to hear of ventilators to India.”

The ventilators are the new “healthy” bridge for stronger Indo-American ties, which has so far been dominated by strategic partnerships in defence and economic spheres. Today, health has emerged as the third pillar of new intense Indo-US strategic relations.

The world has accorded India a new status for its handling of the corona pandemic not only in its own territory, but also for the PM Modi-led action plan to counter the spread of the pandemic, first in the SAARC region and then by shipping and air-lifting essential medical supplies and tablets worldwide, including to the US.

At this critical juncture, the US realises the importance of India and its vast experience in the pharma industry.

Strategic and trade affairs experts in Washington DC too feel that the US and India will be key to future production in medical supplies relevant to fight the Covid-19 crisis. India has emerged as a global capital of generic medicines. India can contribute to the world by producing cheap drugs, including vaccines. With US support in scientific advancement and technology at its command, a high quality medical research enabled to India can aid the mass production of vaccines and essential drugs in India, eventually helping the world facing a crisis like Covid-19 currently.

US-India collaboration can make it affordable and accessible to the world on a real-time basis. It’s a win-win for both the countries and the world as the partnership between the two democracies will yield a high productivity of well-researched, cost-effective drugs.

The healthy bonds between India and the US to fight many diseases go back to collaborations in combating diseases such as tuberculosis, cancer, HIV, eye diseases and environmental health research. There are over 200 ongoing NIH-funded projects in India, involving 20 institutes from the National Institute of Health (NIH) network and several eminent institutions in India.

A recent successful example of the co-operation is the development of the ROTAVAC against Rota virus. Such collaborations will be critical in the fight against Covid-19.

An enhanced medical supplies trade between the two nations will also come handy in fighting the Covid-19 crisis. Both are giants in their own realms in the health sector. India is the second largest exporter of pharmaceuticals to the United States and the United States is the largest exporter of medical devices to India. If both join hands by erasing the trade frictions, India and the US can fight China’s hegemony in the “sub-standard, unauthorised health supplies trade”. India has recently banned exports of certain active pharmaceutical ingredients, and banned imports of ventilators, surgical and patient masks from China. The US is reportedly considering new “Buy American” restrictions on pharmaceutical products to counter China. Many within the US health sector feel an opportunity awaits to harness for better Indo-US ties through the health trade and partnership in research and medical supplies production.

President Trump had also said that he hoped a Covid-19 vaccine would be available by the end of the year and announced to appoint a former head of vaccines at GlaxoSmithKline to spearhead the effort to fight the pandemic. He looks to India for a “joint fightback”.

The US is working with India on developing a vaccine for Covid-19, President Donald Trump said on Friday, praising Indian-Americans as “great scientists and researchers”.

“We have a tremendous Indian population in the United States and many of the people that you are talking about are working on the vaccine too. Great scientists and researchers,” Trump had said on Friday.

An early vaccine with a stamp of the US and India collaboration will mean more than a mere a healthy breakthrough, but a remedy for many diplomatic challenges, including those linked to China. India will stand to gain strategically and stamp its emergence as the new medical manufacturing hub worldwide, posing a direct challenge to China in Asia and Asia-Pacific region.

Let a new initiative in the US-India partnership begin—one that can contribute to a global response to Covid-19.

One Reply to “New initiative in US-India partnership, courtesy Covid”

  1. Interpreting the prospects for India in contemporary times of 2020-21 in the light of planetary indications.
    The Coronavirus pandemic officially designated as Covid-19 began to show up itself in some countries by the end of March , 2020. During this early stage when it was felt that the pandemic could assume worrisome concern in India , Prime Minister of India , Shri Narendra Modi , announced well-timed lockdown in the country in the night of 24 March , 2020. In April , 2020 , he shared with the nation that the catastrophic situation is also indicative of some message for the nation , which can be interpreted or perceived to include emergence of a global visionary perspective for India . So huge pain of Coronavirus pandemic is there but the pain has also brought with it some positive message for the country. Soon after , we began to hear near May 2020 the following inspiring visionary message in audio-video tune through news TV Channels of India : –
    “ Aanewale Kal Ki Dastak Sunayi Deti Hai. Naye Josh Se Nikal Pade Hamm , Aanewala Kall Hogaa Hamara. Naye India Ka Naya Josh”.
    We are continuing to hear the said inspiring message signifying a visionary sort of forecast of contemporary times for India. It can be opined that the message is attempting well to articulate something positive , some welcome hope of new India in the making. In this context , it may be apt to refer readers to this Vedic astrology writer’s one of predictions for India in article – “ Predictions for coming year 2020 by kushal kumar” – published last year 2019 on 10 October at theindiapost.com/articles/predictions-for-coming-year-2020-by-kushal-kumar/. The text looks to be reflecting or corresponding to the aforesaid visionary theme in the tune , reads like this in the article of this writer published last year 2019 on 10 October :-
    “ Now something encouraging. The second half of the year from July to November 2020 looks to be addressing the setbacks or delay of the past , particularly those of first half. Some trends of success or forward movement in economic sector , political issues are likely. Cooperation or support of global powers may be seen coming. Some historic political decision is likely. The obstructive forces may weaken to some extent. Like the previous year , acceptance by global community of India’s positive role in world affairs may be in news. It seems the said period of second half in 2020 can boost up the ambitious side of the nation. Such knowledge or stuff related thereto as Yoga , Ayurveda , herbal , and spiritual side addressing material issues like health. Efforts made in the economic sector or space program are likely to meet with success bringing name”. Here , a reference to Yoga , herbal , Ayurveda and spiritual side addressing issues like health must be interpreted to include something manufactured or collaborated in India.
    The aforesaid forecast interpreting ‘something encouraging’ covering about July to October or November in 2020 for India , seems to have begun to sound the nation by May 2020 on the ground , a little before the said period begins. India has got a prestigious position in the W.H.O. , an invitation to Prime Minister , Shri Narendar Modi to attend G-7 which can be interpreted to paving way for membership of G-7 countries , trust level globally for India has gained phenomenal strength , a sort of leadership comparable with the best is being recognized – world has begun to look to India with hope , and a prospect of huge unexpected manufacturing-trading activity seems to be emerging and above all , obstructive forces look to be falling in their own weight. So , briefly speaking , the forecast of a visionary period likely to emerge for India during about July to October or November 2020 , made by this writer last year 2019 on 10 October , is getting matched by actual happenings on the ground. That is why we are hearing the visionary tune a little prior of the effective period of time in the forecast.

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