G20 leaders have pledged more than $21 billion to ensure equitable access to coronavirus vaccines worldwide, the group said on Sonday.

Iran Press/Middle East: "The G20, with invited countries, has coordinated the global efforts to support the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic. To date, G20 members and invited countries have pledged over US$21 billion to support funding in global health," the group said in a statement.

The pledges will be directed towards diagnostics, vaccines, therapeutics, and research and development, the statement added.

"The COVID-19 pandemic and its unprecedented impact in terms of lives lost, livelihoods and economies affected, is an unparalleled shock that has revealed vulnerabilities in our preparedness and response and underscored our common challenges," the final communique said.

The G20 also pledged to mobilize more resources to address the immediate financing needs to support the research, development, manufacturing, and distribution of safe and effective Covid-19 diagnostics, therapeutics, and vaccines.

G20 leaders pledged to address the disproportionate social and economic impact of the virus, having already deployed an unprecedented $11 trillion to accelerate the global recovery and $21 billion at the outset of the crisis to support health systems and the hunt for a vaccine.

Leaders also said support for multilateral institutions and the global trading system was “as important as ever,” in an apparent acknowledgment of various trade disputes initiated under the current US administration. 

"We strive to realize the goal of a free, fair, inclusive, non-discriminatory, transparent, predictable, and stable trade and investment environment, and to keep our markets open," leaders said. "We will continue to work to ensure a level playing field to foster an enabling business environment."

The declaration also said all G20 members continue to support efforts and utilize all available approaches aimed at advancing environmental stewardship for future generations.