G20 leaders back ‘equitable’ global access to COVID-19 vaccines

g20 riyadh november
Twitter / @g20org

Tista' taqra bil- Malti.

G20 leaders will pledge to “spare no effort” in ensuring the equitable distribution of coronavirus vaccines worldwide and reaffirm support for debt-laden poor countries, The Guardian has reported based on a draft communique seen by AFP on Sunday.

According to the reports, the global leaders will support “multilateral” trade as well as the global fight against climate change. However the document lacks details on many of the issues which have dominated the virtual summit hosted in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

The two-day summit began on Saturday, as international efforts continue to intensify for a large-scale rollout of coronavirus vaccines.

The European Union urged G20 leaders to quickly plug a $4.5 billion funding shortfall in the global project for vaccines, tests and therapeutics – called Access to COVID-19 Tools (ACT) Accelerator – and its COVAX facility to distribute vaccines.

Chancellor Angela Merkel told the G20 that Germany was contributing more than €500 million to the effort, urging other countries to do their part.

US President Donald Trump, who lost the US presidential election but has refused to concede to former Vice President Joe Biden, addressed G20 leaders briefly before going to play golf. So far, there is no mention of any US pledge to support the global vaccine distribution effort.

The global pandemic has thrown the global economy into a deep recession. An economic rebound requires a global effort.