Vaccine campaigners praise Biden’s “watershed” vaccine IP waiver and warn Boris Johnson “has no more excuses” for blocking the move
Date: 5 May 2021
Reacting to the statement from President Biden’s Trade Representative Katherine Tai that the US is backing an intellectual property waiver on Covid-19 vaccines this evening, Nick Dearden, Director of Global Justice Now, said:
“This seismic decision from the Biden administration is a watershed moment. It could be the beginning of the end of vaccine apartheid, if other leaders like Boris Johnson stop standing in the way.
“The Prime Minister has no more excuses. He must now follow Biden’s lead and drop his opposition to the intellectual property waiver immediately. Anything less would be shameful.
“This is not the end of the process, and negotiations will now begin at the WTO in earnest – these negotiations must be conducted openly and with transparency. We urge all world leaders to see the writing on the wall and put peoples’ lives ahead of corporate profit.
“In the many months since this waiver was first proposed, we could have produced many hundreds of millions more vaccines. Let’s get moving. The UK, EU, and all remaining blockers need to get out of the way and let the whole world work to contain this awful virus as quickly as possible.”
Notes for editors
US trade representative, Ambassador Katherine Tai, has announced that the United States is supporting a waiver of intellectual property rules on Covid-19 vaccines: https://twitter.com/AmbassadorTai/status/1390021205974003720
Global Justice Now is part of the People’s Vaccine Alliance, a movement of health, humanitarian and human rights organisations, past and present world leaders, health experts, faith leaders and economists advocating that Covid 19 vaccines are manufactured rapidly and at scale, as global common goods, free of intellectual property protections and made available to all people, in all countries, free of charge.
Global Justice Now is a democratic social justice organisation working as part of a global movement to challenge the powerful and create a more just and equal world. We mobilise people in the UK for change, and act in solidarity with those fighting injustice, particularly in the global south. http://www.globaljustice.org.uk