G20 Urged to Fill $4.5 billion Gap in Global COVID19 Vaccine Fund

Riyadh, Nov 20 (AFP/APP): G20 nations must help plug a $4.5 billion gap in the global Covid-19 vaccine fund to save lives and clear the way for an end to the pandemic, a letter seen by AFP on Friday said.

The letter, sent ahead of this weekend’s virtual G20 summit, was signed by Norwegian Prime Minister Erna Solberg, South African President Cyril Ramaphosa, World Health Organization chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus and Ursula von der Leyen, president of the European Commission.

“A commitment by G20 leaders at the G20 Summit in Riyadh to invest substantially in the ACT-Accelerator’s immediate funding gap of $4.5 billion will immediately save lives, lay the groundwork for mass procurement and delivery of COVID-19 tools around the world, and provide an exit strategy out of this global economic and human crisis”, the letter dated November 16 said.

“With this funding, and a joint commitment to spend a proportion of future stimulus on the COVID-19 tools needed globally, the G20 will build a foundation to end the pandemic,” added the letter addressed to King Salman of Saudi Arabia, the current G20 president.

ACT-Accelerator, led by the WHO, is a globally-pooled hunt for Covid-19 vaccines, diagnostics and treatments. There was no immediate comment from G20 organisers in Riyadh.

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