Despite sanctions, Iran has achieved notable progress in biotechnology, stem cells: UN envoy

Ns News Online Desk:Ns News Online Desk: TEHRAN – Iran’s deputy ambassador to the United Nations has said the country has achieved notable progress in the biotechnology and stem cells industry despite unfair sanctions and coercive measures of the United States.

“Today, we are honored to announce that Iran is one of the few countries that have managed to produce a vaccine for coronavirus,” Zahra Ershadi said on Tuesday at the 76th General Assembly session on global health and foreign policy.

She also criticized the United States, along with a handful of other countries that blindly follow Washington’s policies, for imposing restrictive measures, including illegal and oppressive economic sanctions, on a number of countries, especially those that are affected by the severe consequences of the coronavirus outbreak, IRIB reported.

Ershadi condemned the unilateral coercive measures imposed by the U.S. as a “serious threat” to the nation’s right to health and having access to medicine.

The development of the stem cells industry in the country has gained momentum over the past year through launching six strategic plans by the Vice Presidency for Science and Technology.

In this line, plans for supporting prioritized products, research, and development, as well as medical equipment and the stem cell industry have been carried out. Supporting innovation centers, accelerators, and entrepreneurs in science and technology estates are also on the agenda.

Meanwhile, the promotion of knowledge-based products is among the main activities that have helped develop the stem cell industry, especially in the fields of medical tourism. The United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) Technology and Innovation Report 2021 has placed Iran among upper-middle countries in terms of readiness for frontier technologies.

Nearly 800 knowledge-based companies in the country are currently operating in the field of biotechnology and supplying their products and services to the domestic market In May, the Biotechnology Development Council launched 129 production projects with the aim of saving up to $1.44 billion of foreign currency.

Iran is ranked 12th in the world and first in West Asia in terms of biotechnology, as 9.5 percent of the income of knowledge-based companies and more than 60 percent of their exports are related to biotechnology.

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