Former PMs, Presidents, and Ministers sign a letter saying the richest should pay two-thirds of $66bn needed to vaccinate low-income countries against COVID.

Iran PressEurope: More than 100 former prime ministers, presidents and foreign ministers are among 230 prominent figures calling on the leaders of the G7 countries to pay two-thirds of the $66bn (£46.6bn) needed to vaccinate low-income countries against COVID, the Guardian reported.

A letter ahead of the G7 summit to be hosted by Boris Johnson in Cornwall warns that the leaders of the UK, US, France, Germany, Italy, Japan and Canada must make 2021 “a turning point in global cooperation”.

Fewer than 2% of people in sub-Saharan Africa have been vaccinated against COVID, while the UK has now immunised 70% of its population with at least one dose.

On Sunday Johnson said he would ask his counterparts at the G7 summit to “rise to the greatest challenge of the postwar era” by “vaccinating the world by the end of next year” but gave no specifics on funding or dose-sharing.

An estimated $66bn over two years is needed for the global vaccine effort. The former leaders say the G7 should pay two-thirds of the cost, according to the size of their economies.

The G7 should also lead the way on dose-sharing, voluntary licensing agreements and temporary patent waivers to enable vaccine manufacturing to begin on every continent, the letter says.

That would require pharmaceutical companies to share the technological knowhow and skills to make vaccines as well as the formula.


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