US President Biden Pledges $4 Billion For Global COVID-19 Vaccine Program

Henrietta Strickland
February 19, 2021

President Biden is set on Friday to announce a total of $4 billion in contributions to COVAX, the vaccine alliance trying to distribute COVID-19 vaccines to 92 low- and middle-income countries, a senior administration official told reporters.

President Biden has noted publicly the U.S.is anticipating having enough vaccines to inoculate the entire country by late summer, having secured the dosage commitments from both Pfizer and Moderna two-doses vaccines that have emergency-use approval through the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Some global health officials have complained that funding isn't the issue when it comes to getting the vaccine quickly to developing countries because there isn't enough vaccine to buy, a problem the USA has contributed to by snatching up hundreds of millions of doses for Americans.

The USD 4 billion in U. COVAX aims to ensure a fair supply of coronavirus vaccines around the world.

It remains to be seen how G7 allies will receive the United States move, given that the United States refused to take part in the initiative under Mr Trump.

French President Emmanuel Macron, in an interview Thursday with the Financial Times, called on the U. S. and European nations to allocate up to 5% of current vaccine supplies to developing countries the kind of vaccine diplomacy that China and Russian Federation have begun deploying.

Last month, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau also raised with Biden the prospect of Canada getting the vaccine from pharmaceutical giant Pfizer's facility in Kalamazoo, Michigan, according to a senior Canadian government official, who spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity to describe a private conversation.

Biden's action is a sharp departure from his predecessor Donald Trump's threat to withdraw from the World Health Organization, which he accused of being too close to China, where the novel coronavirus emerged in late 2019.

"While we're not able to share vaccine doses at this time, while we're focused on American vaccinations and getting shots into arms here, we're working hard to support COVAX, strengthen global vaccination around the world, and determining the timeline for when we will have a sufficient supply in the United States and be able to donate surplus vaccines", the official said, per Politico.

The global aid organization UNICEF has said countries that have vaccinated their own health workers and populations at highest risk of severe disease should share vaccine doses with other countries so they can do the same.

Group of Seven leaders will be discussing worldwide coordination on ending the deadly and disruptive pandemic when they meet virtually on Friday.

Biden is also scheduled to deliver a virtual address to the Munich Security Conference on Friday before traveling to MI to visit Pfizer's vaccine manufacturing facility.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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