Covid 19 and G7; Six Lakh Lives Lost

Covid 19 and G7; Six Lakh Lives Lost

As the G7 summit undergoes in Germany, a new analysis shows that 6,00,000 lives in low- and middle income countries could have been saved if the G7 countries had fulfilled its promise of providing Covid 19 vaccine.

The G7 countries only provided less than half (49 percent) of the 2.1 billion COVID vaccine donations promised to poorer countries, which delivered could have save the lives, said Oxfam and the People’s Vaccine Alliance.   


They alleged that the worst offenders are the UK and Canada, who failed to deliver anywhere near the number of vaccines they promised. “Just 39 percent of the 100 million doses the UK pledged to deliver by the end of this month have actually been delivered. While the deadline to meet their respective commitments is not until the end of the year, only 30 percent of Canada’s 50.7 million doses and 46 percent of the 1.2 billion pledged by the US have been delivered. So-called “Team Europe’ have collectively delivered just 56 percent of the 700 million doses promised by the middle of 2022 and Japan has delivered 64 percent of the 60 million doses it said it would send, they said.

The two organisations also pointed out that the latest data from Airfinity suggests that rich nations might have already secured over half (55 percent) of the new generation of Omicron-specific mRNA COVID-19 vaccines developed by Moderna and Pfizer/BioNTech. “This is even before they have been approved for use, making it likely that many developing countries will yet again be left at the back of the queue,” they said.

Head of Inequality Policy at Oxfam and Co-Chair of the People’s Vaccine Alliance Max Lawson, said: “On every level, rich nations have massively betrayed poor countries when it comes to COVID vaccines. First, they stockpiled all the supply for themselves, then they promised to donate their leftovers, but hundreds of millions of these doses never materialized.”

“Rich nations are already hoarding the new generation of Omicron specific vaccines, whilst people in poorer countries will be forced to continue to face new variants with vaccines that are increasingly ineffective. The only way to fix this is to give nations the rights to make their own, not rely on rich countries to pass on doses they no longer need and deliver too late for the millions who have died,” said Lawson.


In the analysis, the two organisations said that only 14 percent of people in low-income countries and 18 percent of people on the African continent are fully vaccinated till now. They are far from the target to have 70 percent coverage in all nations by the middle of the year. Moreover, the analyisis criticised that the rich nations led by the EU and UK forced through a text at the WTO which has failed to waive intellectual property on vaccines, treatments and technology that would have enabled developing countries to produce their own generic vaccines. “Instead, the text adds even more bureaucratic hurdles and further protects the hugely profitable monopolies of firms such as Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna,” they said.

Meanwhile, the People’s Vaccine Alliance called on all countries facing shortages of vaccines, tests and treatments to save lives and end the pandemic by using all trade rule flexibilities available and circumventing WTO rules if necessary. They say the G7 and other rich countries must not stand in their way.

The campaign groups also says that the model of leaving developing countries to rely on donations in order to vaccinate people is completely flawed and actually leads to frustration and mistrust.

Policy Advisor at The People’s Vaccine Alliance Julia Kosgei, said: “hundreds of thousands of lives have been saved in Africa by the vaccines, but so many more deaths could have been prevented. Vaccination programs have worked best when doses have arrived on time, allowing governments to plan and scale up distribution. But many countries waited a year to get their first doses. When doses finally arrived, they came all at once, often close to their expiry date, which is totally unmanageable and unfair for countries that have already struggling health systems.”

“‘Developing countries do not want to have to wait for leftovers, they want the reliability and dignity of being able to produce their own doses. It is a disgrace that rich countries stalled negotiations on an IP waiver to scale up vaccine production across the world so that pharmaceutical corporations could maximise profits while people died without access. To add insult to injury they couldn’t even be bothered to ensure timely access to the doses they didn’t even need,” said Julia Kosgei.


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