Boris Johnson : G7 Leaders Will Donate 1 Billion COVID Vaccine Doses
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson expects the Group of Seven (G7) to agree to donate 1 billion COVID-19 vaccine doses to poorer countries during its summit starting on Friday, and help innoculate the world by the end of next year.
Just hours after U.S. President Joe Biden vowed to supercharge the battle against coronavirus with a donation of 500 million Pfizer (PFE.N) shots, Johnson said Britain would give at least 100 million surplus vaccines to the poorest nations.
Johnson has already called on G7 leaders to commit to vaccinate the entire world by the end of 2022 and the group is expected to pledge 1 billion doses during its three-day summit in the English seaside resort of Carbis Bay. Oxfam also called on G7 leaders to support a waiver on the intellectual property behind the vaccines.
Some campaign groups condemned the plan as a drop in the ocean, with Oxfam estimating that nearly 4 billion people will depend for vaccines on COVAX, the program that distributes Covid19 shots to low and middle income countries. “As a result of the success of the UK’s vaccine program we are now in a position to share some of our surplus doses with those who need them,” Johnson will say on Friday, according to excerpts of the announcement released by his office.
This comes as the US President reaffirmed his commitment to leading an international and coordinated vaccination effort, announcing that he will donate 80 million COVID-19 vaccines the 60 million doses of AstraZeneca vaccines previously announced and an additional 20 million doses by the end of June.
Of the 100 million British shots, 80 million will go to the COVAX program led by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the rest will be shared bilaterally with countries in need.