The prohibition on the export of various medical items such as personal protective equipment (PPE) coveralls, 2/3 ply masks, face shields, ventilators and Hydroxychloroquine API and its formulations have been removed, Union Commerce Minister Piyush Goyal said on Wednesday, September 16. The prohibition on the export of medical items was imposed to ensure the domestic availability of these items to fight COVID-19.
"The prohibition on export of various medical items such as PPE Coveralls, 2/3 Ply masks, Face Shields, Sanitizers (except when exported in containers with dispenser pumps), Hydroxychloroquine API and its formulations, 13 other Pharmaceutical APIs and its formulations and Ventilators has been removed. While export of Diagnostic Kits, N-95/FFP2 masks is currently restricted, their export is allowed subject to a monthly quota," Goyal stated in a written reply in the Lok Sabha.
He said that the export ban on PPE coveralls was removed when the domestic production of PPE coveralls subsequently reached 1.5 crore units per month.
"The availability of alcohol-based Hand Sanitizers was 10 lakh litres per annum. This manufacturing capacity subsequently increased to 38 Lakh litres per day, enabling the prohibition on the export of Alcohol-based hand sanitizers (except when exported in containers with dispenser pumps) to be removed," read the reply.
The minister said that ventilators production in the country, which was negligible prior to January 2020, was ramped up to enable the export of domestically manufactured ventilators.
Currently, there are 50,20,359 confirmed novel coronavirus cases in India out of which 39,42,360 patients have recovered while 82,066 fatalities have been reported. There are 9,95,933 active cases in the country. With 82,961 patients recovering in the last 24 hours, India's COVID-19 recovery rate soared to 78.53%. At present, the recovered cases outnumber active cases by 29,46,427.
Maharashtra, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Tamil Nadu contribute 60% of the active cases. Addressing the press on Tuesday, Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan refuted the notion that there is a shortage of oxygen. Noting that the current capacity for production of oxygen is slightly more than 6,900 metric tonne, he urged every state to ensure proper inventory management so that oxygen can be replenished in time.