G7 leaders increase contribution to Covax vaccine-sharing initiative
G7 leaders have pledged to intensify co-operation on Covid-19 and increase their contribution to the Covax vaccine-sharing initiative. In a joint statement, released after a virtual summit last night, the G7 leaders raised their overall commitment to 7.5 bn US dollars. The move is expected to boost the distribution of COVID-19 vaccines to poor nations.
US President Joe Biden pledged four billion dollars for COVAX vaccinations program. An initial two billion dollars will be donated in 2021, with an additional two billion dollars coming over the next two years.
Germany pledged an additional 1.2bn dollars.
The Covax scheme is aiming to get at least 1.3bn vaccine doses to vulnerable populations worldwide in the coming months. Covax is co-led by Gavi, known as the Vaccine Alliance, the World Health Organization and the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations.
Earlier this week, the UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has criticized the distribution of vaccines, calling it “wildly uneven and unfair”. He urged the global north to contribute more to the COVAX facility to help fight the pandemic in the global south.