Manufacturers Urged to Prioritize Covid-19 Vaccine Contracts with UN-Led COVAX

    Wahyu Dwi Anggoro - 23 February 2021 11:14 WIB
    Manufacturers Urged to Prioritize Covid-19 Vaccine Contracts with UN-Led COVAX
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    Jakarta: The World Health Organization (WHO) Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus has called on manufacturers to prioritize contracts with the United Nations (UN)-led equitable vaccines initiative, COVAX.

    "It's not a matter of charity, it’s a matter of epidemiology" Tedros told WHO's regular bi-weekly briefing on Monday.

    He began the press briefing by praising Friday’s pledge from leaders of the seven leading industrial nations, the G7, to intensify cooperation and increase their overall contribution to the international effort under the so-called ACT Accelerator programme, to around $7.5 billion.

    "These funds and donations move us one step closer to meeting our target to start vaccination of health workers and older people in all countries, within the first 100 days of the year”, said Tedros.

    However, Even if COVAX has the funds, it can only delivery vaccines to poorer countries if high-income countries cooperate in respecting the deals COVAX has done and the new deals it is doing.

    "If there are no vaccines to buy, money is irrelevant. Currently, some high-income countries are entering contracts with vaccine manufacturers that undermine the deals that COVAX has in place, and reduce the number of doses COVAX can buy," he said.

    Moreover, The WHO chief said that there was still a funding gap of nearly $23 billion to fully finance the entire ACT Accelerator vaccine initiative.

    "we need more funding, we need countries to share doses immediately, we need manufacturers to prioritize contracts with COVAX, and we also need a significant increase in the production of vaccines," Tedros said.


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