Fire hits maker of Covid-19 vaccine

World | AGENCIES 22 Jan 2021

A fire broke out yesterday at India's Serum Institute, the world's largest maker of vaccines, but a company source said production of drugs to prevent coronavirus was not affected.

The Serum Institute in Pune is producing millions of doses of the Covishield coronavirus vaccine, developed by AstraZeneca and Oxford University, for India and many other countries.

"It is not going to affect production of the Covid-19 vaccine," a source at the institute said, adding that the blaze was at a new plant under construction.

Three people were reported to have been rescued from the blaze, with another unaccounted for.

The complex where the fire broke out is a few minutes' drive from the facility where the coronavirus vaccines are produced, reports said.

Eight or nine buildings are under construction at the complex to enhance its manufacturing capability.

Serum Institute produces 1.5 billion doses of vaccine a year even before the pandemic.

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