Australia recognises Bharat Biotech’s Covaxin for travel purposes

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NEW DELHI: The Australian government has added Bharat Biotech’s Covid-19 jab Covaxin to its list of approved vaccines for establishing a traveller’s vaccination status. Thus, Indians who received Covaxin will be allowed to enter the country.

Last month, Australia recognised Covishield, manufactured by the Serum Institute of India, for travel purposes. The Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA), Australia’s pharma regulator, has also added Sinopharm’s BBIBP-CorV to the list.

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“Today, the TGA determined that Covaxin (manufactured by Bharat Biotech, India) and BBIBP-CorV (manufactured by Sinopharm, China) vaccines would be ‘recognised’ for the purpose of establishing a traveller’s vaccination status. This recognition is for travellers aged 12 and over who have been vaccinated with Covaxin, and those 18 to 60 who have been vaccinated with BBIBP-CorV,” a statement said.

The move will have a significant impact on the return of international students, and travel of skilled and unskilled workers to Australia.

“Importantly, recognition of Covaxin, and BBIBP-CorV, along with the previously announced recognition of Coronavac (manufactured by Sinovac, China) and Covishield (manufactured by AstraZeneca, India), means many citizens of China and India as well as other countries in our region where these vaccines have been widely deployed will now be considered fully vaccinated on entry to Australia,” the statement further said.

Unvaccinated travellers will still face quarantine restrictions and all travellers need proof of a negative Covid-19 test prior to boarding.

The development comes days after the World Health Organisation sought more details from Bharat Biotech to consider its Covid-19 vaccine Covaxin for Emergency Use Listing.