President Cyril Ramaphosa says if the world is to emerge from this grave crisis, it is essential we work together to mobilise and direct resources to those countries in greatest need. File photo.
President Cyril Ramaphosa has called on G7 members to support a Covid-19 Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property (Trips) waiver and engage in negotiations that will massively and rapidly expand vaccine production in Africa and across the world.
Speaking at the summit held in the UK over the weekend, Ramaphosa said inaction to overcome the current global health crisis would cost lives.
Ramaphosa was invited by UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson to attend the summit in recognition of SA’s leadership role on the continent and globally in the fight against the pandemic.
Here are five quotes from Ramaphosa’s remarks at the G7 leaders’ summit:
“The negotiations must be concluded soon because the cost of inaction is measured in people’s lives.
“If the world is to emerge from this grave crisis, it is essential we work together to mobilise and direct resources to those countries in the greatest need, and that we do so now.”
“If we are to save lives and end the pandemic, we need to expand and diversify manufacturing and get medical products to treat, combat and prevent the pandemic to as many people as quickly as possible.”
Limit lives lost
“To successfully contain a virus of this nature, to limit loss of life and to prevent the emergence of new variants requires that as many of the world’s population is vaccinated in the shortest time possible.”
“At the same time, we need to address the substantial financing gap for tests, treatments, critical supplies like oxygen and the health systems that enable testing, treatment and vaccination.”
Access to Covid-19 Tools Accelerator
“Since the formation of the Access to Covid-19 Tools (Act) Accelerator a year ago, it has supported more than 70 countries to expand lab infrastructure for testing and delivered millions of rapid diagnostic tests, accelerated development and production of vaccines, delivered more than 69 million doses since February 2021, and procured personal protective equipment with a value of more than $500m [about R6.8bn].”
$16.8bn funding gap
“The Act Accelerator has the potential to fundamentally change the global trajectory of this disease, but only if all countries contribute their fair share to close the $16.8bn [about R231bn] funding gap for this year.
“If all G7 countries met their fair-share target, this initiative would be two-thirds funded. And it would be 90% funded if all G20 countries made their fair-share contributions.”