Britain and India deepen the collaboration of existing scientific research with five new projects worth eight million pounds to overcome anti-microbial resistance (AMR) which can lead to important progress in the global war against bacteria and antibiotic-resistant genes.
The funding award was announced by Lord Tariq Ahmad of Wimbledon, Minister of State for South Asia and the Commonwealth, ahead of a virtual visit to India on July 28, according to a statement from the British High Commission here.
India is a major producer of antimicrobials in the global supply chain of the pharmaceutical industry, and this research project aims to develop a better understanding of how waste from antimicrobial plants can inadvertently trigger AMR.
Subject to permits, five projects are planned for September this year. The UK donated four million pounds from the British Research and Innovation Fund for International Cooperation, and India matched this with its own resources. In total, eight million pounds will be used to fund research, the statement said.
Ahmad said, “Britain has partnered with India’s Serum Institute to produce the COVID-19 vaccine, if clinical trials are successful, with plans to distribute to one billion people throughout the developing world. But there are many things we can do together to tackle the pressing global health problems in the world. Our growing research and innovation partnership will benefit people in the UK and India, and so on. “
Sir Philip Barton, High Commissioner for India, said, “Britain is the second largest research partner in India, with combined research estimated to be worth 400 million pounds next year. This large investment allows us to work closely together on global health challenges such as finding the COVID-19 vaccine. “
“Today’s announcement is another demonstration of our excellent research relationship and will strengthen important struggles against anti-microbial resistance,” he added.
Ahmad will lead a virtual roundtable with senior stakeholders based in India and the UK on cold chain technology which is crucial for effective vaccine transportation, ensuring they succeed in reaching their final destination, according to the statement.
Other elements of the minister’s visit include meetings with the State Minister for External Affairs and Parliamentary Affairs, V Muraleedharan, to discuss a number of subjects including multilateral cooperation, meetings with Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani, discussions with local government and others regarding opportunities in the workforce wind and virtual tour of the UK-funded solar power plant in Rajasthan.