Rich nations stockpiling extra vaccines while poorer countries battle - report
Anti-poverty advocacy group, One Campaign, has analysed the current supply deals for COVID-19 vaccines, which show that countries like the US and Britain have large amounts of excess shots after ordering more than they need.
JOHANNESBURG – A new report found that rich nations were collectively stockpiling a billion more COVID-19 shots than they needed, leaving poorer countries scrambling for leftover supplies.
Anti-poverty advocacy group, One Campaign, analysed the current supply deals for COVID-19 vaccines, which show that countries like the US and Britain had large amounts of excess shots after ordering more than they needed.
One Campaign looked at five leading COVID-19 vaccines – AstraZeneca, Johnson and Johnson, Pfizer, Moderna and Novavax.
It found that the US, Britain, Australia, the European Union, Canada and Japan had secured three billion doses of vaccines – that meant they would be sitting with an excess of one billion vaccines, even if they wanted to inoculate their entire populations with two doses.
One Campaign's Africa executive director Edwin Ikhuoria said: “Where less than a few thousand have been immunised across the continent, we have rich countries that have vaccines that are almost three times over their population.”
Ikhuoria said this was extremely concerning at a time where Africa was in dire need of vaccines.
He said this would be a major problem if countries are not working together to end the pandemic.
“My own first, my people first, that is the reason why we are concerned because this virus does not respect borders, it does not respect boundaries.”
Vaccine nationalism was a major problem and the African Union has been speaking out against this rising trend since it first emerged last year.