UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson greets fellow G7 leaders from 10 Downing Street. Photo: Geoff Pugh / WPA Pool / Getty
G7 leaders have pledged to meet those most in need Immunizing the world against the coronavirus by donating money and valuable vaccine doses to a United Nations-sponsored distribution effort Developing countries, or when.
Chancellor Angela Merkel said after her virtual meeting that a fair distribution of vaccines was « an elementary question of fairness ».
After her first meeting of the year because of the pandemic was held remotely, leaders said it would accelerate vaccine development and use around the world and create an “affordable and g Support real access to vaccines and treatments for Covid-19.
« This is a global pandemic and it is of no use if one country is way ahead of the other, » British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said when speaking at the virtual summit opened with the leaders of the United States, France, Germany, Italy, Canada, and Japan. Britain holds the G7 presidency this year.
« We need to move in, » said Johnson, speaking from 10 Downing Street to the other executives in their offices around the world.
« One of the things of which I know colleagues want to do is make sure we distribute vaccines around the world at cost. «
Wealthy nations have ingested hundreds of millions of doses of Covid-19 vaccines, while some countries in the developing world have taken little or none
The business group leaders are keen not to look greedy – and do not want to cede the terrain of vaccine diplomacy to less democratic countries like China and Russia.
Mr Johnson, whose country has recorded nearly 120,000 virus-related deaths, pledged « the majority of all future surplus vaccines » for the United Nations-sponsored Covax effort to vaccinate the world’s most vulnerable people t.
However, UK Foreign Secretary James Cleverly said it was « difficult to say for sure » when or how much Britain could donate.
French President Emmanuel Macron set a firmer target and said , Europe and the US should « very quickly » distribute up to 5 percent of their current Covid-19 vaccine supply to the poorest countries.
In an interview with the Financial Times, Mr. Macron noted that Russia and China are some African nations quickly offered doses of their own products. As the African continent awaits delivery of doses by Covax, an African Union (AU) vaccine task force announced that it will receive 300 million doses of the Russian vaccine Sputnik V in May.
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The AU has already received 270 million doses from AstraZeneca, Pfizer and Johnson & Johnson for the continent of 1.3 billion people.
Mr. Macron said « Hundreds of millions of vaccines are given in rich countries », while vaccination efforts have barely started in poor countries.
« It is an unprecedented acceleration in global inequality and it is also politically unsustainable because it paves the way for a war of influence over vaccines, » he said. « You can see the Chinese strategy and the Russian strategy too. »
The French President’s office said his country was ready to hand over 5 of its vaccine doses but would not give exact numbers or a date.The governments of Canada and the European G7 countries are under pressure to speed up their national campaigns after being outdone by the UK and US.
When asked about Mr Macron’s proposal, Ms Merkel said that percentages and the time of the donations had not been discussed.
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