COVID-19: MEPs want to ensure developing countries’ access to vaccines

(Credit: Unsplash)

This article is brought to you in association with the European Parliament.


COVID-19 vaccines should be produced also in developing countries to overcome the pandemic, development MEPs told Commissioner Urpilainen on Thursday.

“Distributing vaccines globally is our exit strategy from the pandemic,” International Partnership Commissioner Jutta Urpilainen told the Development Committee, adding that the Commission will coordinate a “common EU vaccine sharing mechanism”, in which EU countries can donate part of their vaccines through the COVAX program, especially when vaccine production is scaled up.

The EU is also seeking to scale up production capacity in developing countries and to contribute to strengthening their regulatory framework in the pharmaceutical field, she said.

“The main tool that the EU can help developing countries with” remains the COVAX assistance program, which aims to deliver vaccines to poorer countries and to which the EU contributed by €850 million, said the commissioner. She announced that COVAX will start deliveries to 18 countries, including 12 low and medium income ones, by the end of February, Urpileinen added.

Vaccine manufacturing in developing countries

Welcoming EU’s involvement in the COVAX assistance program and its focus on distributing vaccines to developing countries in need, several MEPs nevertheless questioned the strategy of vaccine sharing, pointing to current shortage of vaccine doses in the EU itself.

Some speakers pressed for suspending vaccine patents as a way out: the EU must allow developing countries to produce their own inexpensive vaccinations instead of relying on EU charity, they said.

Quote

“We need to fight this pandemic globally as no single nation or even a united EU will be able to solve the crisis alone. It has an immense impact on the developing world, and the full range of consequences is not yet known. We know that developing countries are at risk of losing ten years of progress if nothing is done. If we are to combat this virus effectively, the vaccine has to be available for all. We are calling on the EU to take the lead in enhanced global cooperation and emphasising the role of widespread immunisation against COVID-19 as a global public health good,” said Tomas Tobé (EPP, SE), the chair of the Committee on Development.

Background

In an upcoming draft report, the committee is set to ask for substantial new funds to assist developing countries worldwide in their fight against COVID-19, including by making vaccines available globally. Last spring, Development Committee Chair Tomas Tobé called for such action, and the committee urged the international community to protect the most vulnerable.

In a debate in November 2020, the GAVI Alliance told  the committee the COVAX assistance program they lead planned to deliver two billion doses of safe, effective COVID-19 vaccines to developing countries by the end of 2021.

the sting Milestones

Featured Stings

Can we feed everyone without unleashing disaster? Read on

These campaigners want to give a quarter of the UK back to nature

How to build a more resilient and inclusive global system

Stopping antimicrobial resistance would cost just USD 2 per person a year

Cities: a ’cause of and solution to’ climate change

MEPs cap prices of calls within EU and approve emergency alert system

UN chief hopes for new agreement after Israel concludes international observation mission

How to stay in shape and step up support for refugees

Innovation is the key to the pay-TV industry’s long-term growth

‘Dangerous nationalism’ seriously threatens efforts to tackle statelessness: UNHCR chief

Is Eurozone heading towards a long stagnation?

Spain will soon overtake Japan in life expectancy rankings. Here’s why

Sovereign wealth funds could increase equality in a post-COVID world

Election-related violence claims 85 lives in Afghanistan: UN report

Countries must make teaching profession more financially and intellectually attractive

An economist explains what happens if there’s another financial crisis

Commissioner sings “Volar-e” but the European driver no “Cantar-e”

COP21 Breaking News_03 December: Transport Industry Drive for Improved Energy Efficiency and Electro-Mobility to Stem High Growth of Emissions

This fascinating map shows how food moves around the US

Draghi left alone with no hope of boosting EU growth as Merkel just focuses on next elections

These 11 companies are leading the way to a circular economy

From social entrepreneurship to systems entrepreneurship: how to create lasting change

Parliament votes for €1 billion in aid to Ukraine

How can education empower youth to become tomorrow’s leaders

Worth going ‘extra mile’ for a new Syrian constitution, UN envoy urges

TTIP is not dead as of yet, the 15th round of negotiations in New York shouts

250+ senior claims leaders under one roof, exchanging transformation strategy

The importance and the need of mobile technology in the health care system and in saving lives

MEPs share concerns about COVID-19 variants

Here’s how we can make innovation more inclusive

ECB settles the bank resolution issue, makes banking union tangible

Davos on Climate Change: citizens demanding more actions while CEOs tried to balance profit with sustainability

Coronavirus: Commission expands talks to a fifth vaccine manufacturer

A 3-step plan for carbon-neutral cars

COVID-19 Update: Solidarity and Joint Efforts Shall be the Main Theme For China and Europe in the Fight Against the Outbreak

2018 Golden Pen of Freedom Awarded to Maria Ressa of the Philippines

Trump badly cornered at home by agribusiness and steel consumer lobbies: Trade

As conflicts become more complex, ‘mediation is no longer an option; it is a necessity’, UN chief tells Security Council

European Youth Forum on Summit on Jobs and Growth

The European reaction to the neo-fascist wind

Venezuelan exodus to Ecuador reaches record levels: UN refugee agency steps up aid

MEPs debate Brexit and relations with China following EU spring summit

Brexit may finally not really happen; The Brits have second thoughts

COVID-19: lessons from Italy on public-private healthcare procurement

Mental health and social isolation: how do have an active participation in self-care?

Climate change and health: creating global awareness and using earth resources wisely

How cocoa farming can help stop deforestation

5 ways the ocean can contribute to a green post-COVID recovery

Trying to cure bank cancer with analgesics

How Islamic finance can build resilience to climate change

COVID-19: Why we must take the widescreen view of workforce uncertainty

Want a more inclusive society? Start with mobility

Mental Health: Role of the individual for their well-being in the pandemic

EU confronts environmental threats as global leaders attempt to revive the global sentiment at NYC climate week

‘Free state aid’ for imprudent banks

We need natural solutions to fight ocean and climate risk

With field schools in Kenya, UN agriculture agency teaches techniques to combat drought

It’s time to switch to a four-day working week, say these two Davos experts

Why building consumer trust is the key to unlocking AI’s true potential

What paleoecology can teach us about fires in the Amazon

UN ‘regrets’ new US position on legality of Israeli settlements

In Yemen, Special Envoy sees UN role in preserving ‘essential’ aid pipeline at country’s major port

Eurozone bank rescues ‘a la carte’ until 2015 then only bail-ins

Peacekeeping chief honours Tanzanian troops in Zanzibar, a year on from deadly DR Congo attacks

More Stings?

Speak your Mind Here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s