Modi India Global Week
India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi delivers the inaugural address at India Global Week 2020, in New Delhi on Thursday. Image Credit: ANI

New Delhi: With India now one of the world’s top three COVID-19 hotspots, the country is focused on controlling its pandemic and reviving stalled economic growth, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Thursday.

India’s coronavirus epidemic spiralled when the nation began easing its strict and sweeping lockdown in late April in order to reverse an economic collapse that has left millions destitute. The South Asian nation has since set an ambitious timeline to produce an indigenous vaccine that it hopes will go from human trials to being available for general use by Aug. 15.

“Today our companies are active in international efforts for development and production of COVID-19 vaccine,” said Modi addressing the opening session of India Global Week, a three-day conference organized by India Inc. Group, a UK-based media house. “I am certain that India will have an important role in developing and scaling up production of a vaccine once it is made.”

“The pandemic has once again shown that India’s pharma industry is an asset not just for India but for the entire world,” Modi said in video address. “It has played a leading role in reducing the cost of medicines especially for developing countries.”

India’s economy, which is heading for its first contraction in more than four decades, is seeing green shoots of recovery while the country is becoming more investment friendly and competitive, Modi said. “India is laying a red carpet for all global companies to come and establish their presence in the country,” he said.