India approves J&J COVID-19 vaccine for emergency use

(Reuters) – India has approved Johnson & Johnson’s (JNJ.N) single-dose COVID-19 vaccine for emergency use on Saturday, health minister Mansukh Mandaviya said in a tweet.

The pharmaceutical giant had applied for emergency use approval of its vaccine, the company had said on Friday. The shot will be brought to India through a supply agreement with homegrown vaccine maker Biological E Ltd, J&J had said.

Indian health authorities have so far approved the use of vaccines developed by AstraZeneca (AZN.L), Bharat Biotech, Russia’s Gamaleya Institute and Moderna (MRNA.O).

Coronavirus cases worldwide surpassed 200 million earlier in the week, according to a Reuters tally, as the more-infectious Delta variant threatens areas with low vaccination rates and strains healthcare systems.

India has reported an average of 30,000 to 40,000 new coronavirus cases every day since July, and the federal government has warned that although cases have dipped from a high of 400,000 daily at the peak of the deadly second wave, the danger has not abated yet.

Reporting by Aishwarya Nair in Bengaluru and Swati Bhat in Mumbai; Editing by Simon Cameron-Moore

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