The government has exempted customs duty on imports of Covid-19 vaccines till March 31, 2023 in a bid to ensure domestic availability amid fears of a surge in coronavirus infections.
In a notification, the Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBIC) said Covid vaccines, when imported into India by central government or state governments, would be exempt from the whole of customs duty from January 14, 2023 till March 31, 2023.
The government had, in April 2021, first exempted Covid-19 vaccines from 10 per cent customs duty. The exemption was extended several times till June 2022.
With new variants causing significant rise in daily case load in certain countries, including neighbouring China, the government had re-introduced certain precautionary measures, like random passenger testing at airports and genome sequencing, to check Covid spread in India.
Currently, Covid vaccines administered in India include Covishield, Covaxin, Sputnik V, Corbevax and Covovax.