India’s production and exports of Russia’s Sputnik COVID-19 vaccines are expected to slow further following U.S. sanctions on Russia’s sovereign wealth fund that promotes the shot globally, three Indian pharmaceutical industry sources told Reuters.
The Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) had billed India as one of Sputnik’s biggest production hubs and markets, though local sales have stagnated at 1.2 million doses out of 1.8 billion doses of various vaccines administered in the country.
RDIF, which has said the U.S. sanction this week could complicate its promotion of Sputnik shots, has deals with several Indian companies to make nearly 1 billion doses of it, though output has not risen beyond a few million doses.
RDIF’s main Indian distributor for Sputnik is Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories and its manufacturing partners include Hetero and the Serum Institute of India.
RDIF and Hetero did not respond to requests for comment. The SII declined to comment.
Dr. Reddy’s, one of India’s biggest drugmakers which has been selling its products in and around Russia for more than three decades, said it did not see any impact as Indian companies no longer import material from Russia to make Sputnik shots in India, a spokesperson said in an email:
We have manufacturing capabilities in India and drug substance is not imported. Hence there is no impact, overall, we are monitoring evolving developments closely and preparing accordingly.