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COVID-19: India bans export of Hydroxychloroquine


NEW DELHI: The Centre has banned the export of Hydroxychloroquine with immediate effect in the wake of novel coronavirus outbreak.

The government made amendments in Schedule 2 of the ITCH Export Policy related export of Hydroxychloroquine and its formulations. However, exports will be allowed in some cases.

"Exports will be allowed in case of shipments where Irrevocable Letter of Credit has been issued before the date of this notification or in the case where full advance payment has been received by the exporter in India against the specific shipment, subject to the submission of documentary evidence," read a Government of India notification dated March 25.

"Exports will be allowed from the SEZs/EOU Units and in cases where exports is made to fulfill export obligation under any Advance License issued on or before the date of this notification," it read.

The government said that exports will be allowed to other countries on "humanitarian" grounds on case case-to-case basis on the recommendation of the External Affairs Ministry to be allowed.

The National Task Force for COVID-19 constituted by Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) had earlier recommended the use of hydroxychloroquine for prevention of the coronavirus infection for high-risk cases.

The advisory provides for placing the -- asymptomatic healthcare workers involved in the care of likely or confirmed cases of COVID-19, and asymptomatic household contacts of laboratory-confirmed cases -- under chemoprophylasxis with hydroxychloroquine.

The protocol recommended by the National Task Force has been approved by the Drug Controller General of India for restricted use in emergency situations.

According to ICMR, India has reported about 536 confirmed positive cases of COVID-19 and 10 deaths till date.