Helen Clark, former Prime Minister of New Zealand: the global deployment of the Covid-19 vaccine is “vital”
Former Prime Minister Helen Clark believes rich countries should provide more vaccines and funds to help end the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.
Clark, who co-chaired an independent international panel on pandemic preparedness and response, said high-income countries are trying to do their best for their own citizens by getting them vaccinated.
She told RNZ Noon report it wouldn’t add much if Covid-19 wreaked havoc in other countries and more variants emerged.
“In other parts of the world the disease is raging and more and more variants are coming to us, and it is becoming an increasingly difficult disease to fight – we haven’t really accomplished much,” a- she declared.
“The bottom line is to get the world vaccinated. As we know, while we are sitting behind our great divide with Australia and the South Pacific, we are not really safe until everyone is safe It is therefore essential to deploy immunization globally.
“It comes at a cost, and the G7 countries… among the richest in the world should absorb a reasonable proportion of it,” she said.
The G7 – the Group of Seven – is an organization made up of Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United States – the most advanced economies in the world.
These countries represent around 40 percent of global GDP.
According to Médecins Sans Frontières, according to a study carried out by Oxfam, “of the 1.77 billion doses of Covid-19 vaccines administered worldwide, 28% were administered in the G7 countries themselves, while in however only 0.3% was administered in low-income countries. This despite the fact that the G7 countries together have roughly the same total population as all low income countries combined, meaning that for every person vaccinated in a low income country, 100 people were vaccinated in the countries. of the G7 “.
Richer countries also needed to do more to redistribute surplus vaccines they had already paid for, Clark said.
“High income countries like the G7, and like ours, have ordered twice as much as we need, and we need to put that back into the pool to go to low and middle income countries,” he said. she declared.
“The Americans are stepping up and leading the dance. I hope all other high-income countries… can step up as well.”
On growing support for investigating the origins of Covid-19, including the possibility that it has leaked from a lab, “there is no evidence for any of the theories at this point,” she said. declared, and more could be announced at the end of the G7 meetup this weekend.
“We don’t necessarily have the smoking gun on the lab,” Clark said.
“China is not an open political system, and it is a constraint. In the future, we will need much more openness from all countries when diseases appear, because without openness and transparency , it becomes more difficult to control an emerging pathogen, ”she said.