G7 vaccine donations will cover just 11% of world’s unvaccinated population
Date: 11 June 2021
UK’s 100 million donated doses only enough for 1% of world’s unvaccinated population
Intellectual property rules must be cleared away to really vaccinate the world, says Global Justice Now
Vaccine equality campaigns have condemned G7 leaders for offering “crumbs from the table” to global south countries in need of vaccines, after member-nations announced donations that would only cover a tenth of the world’s unvaccinated population.
Global Justice Now has called the UK’s donations “a PR gimmick” that will allow the G7 to ignore the structural problem of intellectual property rules driving vaccine supply shortages.
President Biden and President Macron have announced their support for an intellectual property waiver to allow low and middle income countries to produce their own vaccines, but the UK and German governments are still blocking the move.
The waiver was first proposed by India and South Africa at the World Trade Organisation eight months ago with the support of more than 100 mostly low and middle income countries.
The 1 billion doses expected to be pledged by G7 nations at this weekend’s summit will cover just 11% of the world’s unvaccinated population.
6.85 billion people are currently unvaccinated worldwide. The 1 billion pledged doses would provide a single dose to just 15% of the unvaccinated population and a double dose to just 7.3%.
The UK’s own pledge of 100 million doses will provide a single dose to just 1.5% of the world’s unvaccinated population and a double dose to just 0.7%.
The United States this week announced that it would donate 500 million doses. France, Germany and Italy have collectively announced donations of 75 million doses and more announcements are expected over the weekend to bring the total up to 1 billion.
Nick Dearden, Director of Global Justice Now, said:
Boris Johnson’s lofty promises to vaccinate the world have today been wiped out like a surfer in Corbis Bay. After spending eight months blocking proposals to allow the majority of the world to produce their own doses by overriding patents, the government is offering global south countries crumbs from the table. It’s shameful.
The UK has bought 500 million vaccine doses; well beyond what we need. And yet today we’re only offering to give 100 million doses to the rest of the world – and only by the middle of next year. It’s little more than a PR gimmick.
Intellectual property rules are restricting vaccine production to the supply chains of a handful of companies. This weekend, Boris Johnson and Angela Merkel can finally step up to the plate, follow Biden’s lead, and clear away these barriers, so we can vaccinate the whole world.
Notes for editors
Data calculated by Global Justice Now using figures from Oxford University: https://ourworldindata.org/covid-vaccinations
According to Oxford University, 6,850,563,597 people are unvaccinated and 7,314,539,342 are not fully vaccinated. All figures are calculated from the unvaccinated population.
Most vaccines require two doses for a full course, but the Janssen vaccine requires only a single dose. Single and double dose figures are provided throughout this release.
Global Justice Now spokespeople will be on the ground in Cornwall available for comment. Spokespeople include Nick Dearden, Dorothy Guerrero, and Guy Taylor, each are seasoned campaigners who have organised protests at G7-G8 summits over the last 20 years.
Guy Taylor was coordinator of leading ‘anti-globalisation’ campaign group Globalise Resistance who organised massive protests at the G8 in Genoa in 2001.
Dorothy Guerrero is a debt and climate campaigner, who developed her political activism as part of the anti-Marcos movement in the Philippines and went on to work at Focus on the Global South.
Nick Dearden is director of Global Justice Now and has previously organised global justice campaigning at Jubilee Debt Campaign and War on Want, where he was a part of the 2005 G8 Make Poverty History campaign.
Joe Karp-Sawey, Media Manager, Global Justice Now
Image: Simon Dawson/No 10 Downing Street (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)