Be transparent over Covax vaccine plan, govt urged

Clay Curtis
September 23, 2020

These 64 economies include commitments from 35 economies as well as the European Commission which will procure doses on behalf of 27 EU member states plus Norway and Iceland. All told, they represent almost two-thirds of the world's population.

But multilateral initiatives have been touted by experts as ways of reducing the negative impacts of vaccine nationalism.

It is co-led by Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance; the World Health Organisation (WHO); and the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations.

"The COVAX Facility enables governments to spread the risk of vaccine development and ensure their populations can have early access to effective vaccines", Tedros said.

The Covax Facility is about to set a precedent of multilateral cooperation and solidarity, said the FOF statement.

China, where the coronavirus began, was also missing on the list of 64 rich nations who joined the so-called Covax plan to deliver two billion vaccine doses round the world by the end of 2021, prioritising healthcare workers and the vulnerable.

Singapore's Foreign Affairs Ministry shared yesterday a statement by the Friends of the Covid-19 Vaccine Global Access (COVAX) Facility (FOF) in support of COVAX.

Over 155 countries have signed on to COVAX, and the alliance's aim is to distribute safe, effective vaccines once they become available.

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"COVID-19 is an unprecedented global crisis that demands an unprecedented global response", WHO Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said.

In addition to working to get more countries to join Covax, Berkley said there was also an ongoing dialogue with vaccine-producing countries about "if they have successful vaccines that come out, how we can make sure they are made available to others in the world". The facility will help to bring the pandemic under control, save lives, accelerate economic recovery and ensure that the race for vaccines is a collaboration, not a contest, according to the World Health Organization chief.

Nine candidate vaccines are being supported by CEPI, eight of which are in clinical trials.

"Nevertheless, we do not rule out the possibility that our vaccine will in future be offered to participants of COVAX", the source said.

The Federal Government has signed on to another COVID-19 vaccine deal in a bid to shore up Australia's chances of securing the much-needed immunisation.

"Malaysia must increase transparency, prepare our vaccine infrastructure and strengthen our voice globally", it said. "Today, we have taken a great leap towards that goal, for the benefit of all".

"Joining the Covax Facility was not a hard decision - not only will this give Kuwaiti citizens access to Covid-19 vaccines as they become available, it will also mean our friends and partners outside our borders also get access", said Sheikh Dr Basel Humoud Al-Sabah, Minister of Health of the State of Kuwait.

Higher income governments signed up to Covax will now have to provide upfront payments by 9 October to reserve doses of vaccines.

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