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International Travel Should Be Made Easier: PM Modi at COVID Summit

PM Modi also tweeted a photo of himself on board the aircraft flying him to the United States.

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<div class="paragraphs"><p>PM Modi left for the US shortly after his statement.</p></div>
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Speaking at the global COVID-19 summit hosted by President Joe Biden, PM Modi, on Wednesday, 22 September, stated, "The COVID-19 pandemic has been an unprecedented disruption and it is not yet over. Much of the world is still to be vaccinated. That is why this initiative by President Biden is timely and welcome."

"We also need to focus on addressing the pandemic’s economic effects. To that end, international travel should be made easier, through mutual recognition of vaccine certificates,"

Stating that "India has always seen humanity as one family", PM Modi also said:

"India’s pharmaceutical industry has produced cost-effective diagnostic kits, drugs, medical devices and PPE kits. These are providing affordable options to many developing countries."

PM Modi further credited India with "now running the world’s largest vaccination campaign," and said:

"Recently, we vaccinated about 25 million people on a single day. Our grassroots level healthcare system has delivered over 800 million vaccine doses so far. Over 200 million Indians are now fully vaccinated."

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Observing that India is steadily increasing the production capacity of its existing vaccines, Modi said that India will be in a position to resume vaccine supplies to other countries.

"Our Quad partnership with India, Japan and Australia is on track to help produce at least one billion vaccine doses in India to boost the global supply by the end of 2022," US President Biden stated on Wednesday.

'Long Flight Means Opportunity to Go Through Papers': PM Modi Tweets En Route to US

PM Modi on Wednesday tweeted a photo of himself on board the aircraft flying him to the United States, where he will be meeting President Joe Biden as well as Vice President Kamala Harris.

"A long flight also means opportunities to go through papers and some file work," he wrote.

PM Modi's First Visit Since US Polls

He had departed for his trip earlier in the day. This will be his first visit to the country since the US elections.

Ahead of his departure, PM Modi had said in a statement that his visit to the United States would be an occasion to strengthen the Comprehensive Global Strategic Partnership with the US, consolidate India’s relations with Japan and Australia and take forward the country’s collaboration on important global issues.

“During my visit, I will review the India-U.S. Comprehensive Global Strategic Partnership with President Biden and exchange views on regional and global issues of mutual interest,” he had said in the statement.

“I will participate in the first in-person Quad Leaders’ Summit along with President Biden, Prime Minister Scott Morrison of Australia and Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga of Japan. The Summit provides an opportunity to take stock of the outcomes of our Virtual Summit in March this year and identify priorities for future engagements based on our shared vision for the Indo-Pacific region,” he had added.

PM Modi will be meeting PM Morrison and PM Suga to take “stock of the strong bilateral relations with their respective countries” and continue India’s “useful exchanges on regional and global issues”.

PM Modi will also address the United Nations General Assembly on 25 September, where he said he will be “focusing on the pressing global challenges including the COVID-19 pandemic, the need to combat terrorism, climate change and other important issues.”

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