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Adar Poonawala working on a global pandemic treaty

12 Apr 2022

Press release - Adar Poonawala session

Mr Adar Poonawala, Chief Executive Officer Serum Institute of India, is working on a global pandemic treatment treaty and hoping that some multilateral institution will get countries to sign up so that the chaos and inequity of covid vaccine availability is not repeated.

Addressing 7th National Leadership Conclave of All India Management Association, Mr Poonawala said that such a treaty is essential to ensure free flow of vaccine raw materials and harmonize the regulation and recognition of vaccines globally. He argued that signing up such a treaty will make it easier for the politicians to explain reciprocity to their constituents. He pointed out that the Government of India had to step in to get raw materials from the US for covid vaccine in India, something that should not be necessary.

Talking about the new variants of covid spreading around the world, Mr Poonawala said that the world faces a choice between lockdowns and booster shots. He said that he has told Government of India to reduce the gap between the second covid vaccine shot and the booster shot from 9 months to 6 months. “One should have a booster before the next wave and not after it,” he said. He also suggested prescribing booster shots every year or two.

Mr Poonawala said that he had tied up with four developers of covid vaccine, of which Astra Zeneca and Novovax have been launched but the other two have been put on the backburner as demand is going down. He said that he had build separate facilities for each of these vaccines and now he is repurposing some of those.

Regarding his foray into financial services, Mr Poonawala said that India’s economic growth requires capital and credit and the financial sector would fuel the growth. “Finance is an ever growing demand sector, “ he said. He said that as investor he is staying away from the valuation game and investing mainly in brick and mortar businesses.

Mr. Sanjiv Goenka, Conclave Chairman and Chairman, RP-Sanjiv Goenka Group moderated that chat with Mr. Poonawala.

The session was a part of the 7th National Leadership Conclave of AIMA. It was livestreamed on AIMA’s social media channels.

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