European Commission and vaccine manufacturers commit to providing vaccines to developing countries even faster

"It is important that the G20 Health Summit delivered concrete results and that as many people as possible around the world have the chance to be vaccinated," said the health spokesperson of the largest group in the European Parliament (EPP, Christian Democrats), Dr. Peter Liese. "The summit is overshadowed by the question of whether or not vaccine patents should be lifted.

The idea is supported by South Africa, India and recently also by the USA. However, the EU Member States and the European Commission are sceptical. In view of the pictures from India, it is clear that we must help quickly and a waiver of the patent rights must not be a taboo. But it is clear that intellectual property is important to support medical progress. I am convinced that BioNTech's vaccine would probably not exist if, in addition to the EU and federal governments, venture capitalists had not supported the technology and vaccine development in recent years. Moreover, the technology of the mRNA vaccine is so complicated that even if the patent was published, there would not be more vaccine available in the next few months. That is why I support the European Commission's policy.

EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen has announced that 100 million vaccine doses will be made available free of charge to the international vaccination programme Covax and to developing and emerging countries. Under pressure from the European Commission, vaccine manufacturers have also agreed to supply 1.3 billion vaccine doses to developing and emerging countries by the end of this year: for the poorest countries only at the manufacturing price, emerging countries at lower prices. For 2022, they have pledged another 1.3 billion doses - many of which will be delivered through COVAX," explained the doctor and CDU MEP.