Covishield not recognized due to absence of EMA approval: British HC to Maldives

Covishield 2 doses | Photo: PTI

Malé, Maldives – Replying to a query on Covishield recognition in the UK, the British High Commissioner to the Maldives Caron Rohsler today said that Covishield vaccine is not recognized by all countries since it is not approved by EMA.

Stressing that the Covid-19 vaccine itself trumps the location where the vaccine was administered, High Commissioner Rohsler said that while Covishield is a copy of Oxford-AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine, the manufacturer Serum Institute of India (SII) is not certified by the appropriate international body so there is no guarantee that the Covishield vaccine was made right.

However, the British High Commissioner highlighted that she also received the Covishield vaccine and it worked for her.

In early July, a source from India’s External Affairs Ministry told BBC that digital vaccine certificates will become the norm in international travel when borders open and said that India is willing to accept each other’s certificates reciprocally.

Why are you [EU] discriminating against our certification?

India’s External Affairs Ministry Official

The EU Green Pass which will be compulsory for travel to the EU starting today, July 1, will exempt those fully vaccinated with two doses from mandatory quarantine.

The CEO of Serum Institute of India (SII) Adar Poonawalla, meanwhile, said that the Covishield vaccine is more or less identical to AstraZeneca and since AstraZeneca is already approved for Green Pass, Covishield will be approved by EMA within a month in early July.

Following the EMA approved vaccines, Covishield is the most widely recognized within the EU with 17 countries recognizing the vaccine, including Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Latvia, Netherlands, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, and Switzerland.