The G20 Must Act Now to Vaccinate the World
It is imperative that the G20 finance ministers' meeting in Venice this week act to provide the COVID-19 vaccines needed to achieve worldwide comprehensive adult immunization by early 2022. Given current production, this should not be a problem, so long as a global plan is quickly implemented.
SIRACUSA – When G20 finance ministers meet in Venice on July 9-10, they should adopt a plan to immunize the world against COVID-19. Every vaccine-producing country will be in the room: the United States, the United Kingdom, the European Union, China, Russia, and India. Together, these countries produce enough doses to complete the immunization process for the entire globe by early 2022. Yet the world still lacks a plan to get it done.
The existing global effort to bring vaccine coverage to poor countries, known as the COVID-19 Vaccine Global Access (COVAX) facility, has fallen disastrously short of what is needed. Vaccine-producing countries have used their output to vaccinate their own populations – with many millions of doses to spare. And vaccine-producing companies have made secret deals with governments to sell vaccines bilaterally rather than through COVAX at a lower cost.
The world is plagued by the selfishness of the vaccine-producing countries, the greed of the companies, and the collapse of basic cooperative governance between the world’s major regions. We doubt that experts from the US government have ever met (even by Zoom) with their counterparts in China and Russia to plan a global vaccine campaign. The US has been more interested in shipping vaccines to Taiwan, presumably to embarrass the People’s Republic of China, than to work with China to protect the entire world.
Update Jul 7, 2021 15:23UTC
In the ninth paragraph, the amount of doses required was updated.