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EU and global partners pledge EUR 7.4 bn to fund coronavirus vaccine

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EU and global partners pledge EUR 7.4 bn to fund coronavirus vaccine

Charles Michel - Photo EU Council

(BRUSSELS) - The EU joined with global partners Monday to pledge EUR 7.5 billion in funding for the development of fast and equitable access to safe, effective and affordable diagnostics and vaccines against coronavirus.

With the world desperate for the development of a vaccine for COVID-19, global leaders, including of Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Norway, Spain and the United Kingdom - though not the United States - joined forces in this effort to develop life-saving tools, with a crucial pledge that they be universally available and affordable.

"Only a shared spirit of global solidarity and responsibility will defeat the COVID-19 crisis," said the EU Council's president Charles Michel: "This common spirit is our best defence against a virus that has devastated lives and communities in every corner of the globe."

M Michel said vaccines, treatments and therapies will be crucial for Europe. "But even more critical for our most vulnerable partners with fragile health systems, such as Africa," he added. "They must be at the heart of our solidarity."

The countries were responding to an appeal from global health actors for global collaboration to accelerate development, production and equitable global access to new coronavirus essential health technologies.

Researchers and innovators around the world have been working hard to find solutions to save lives and protect people's health. Starting on the 4th of May, the Commission started registering pledges from countries and business foundations. At the same time, the EU executive also announced the next milestones of a global campaign, which is to kick off an ongoing rolling replenishment.

The Commission announced a significant EU pledge – EUR 1 billion in grants and EUR 400 million in guarantees on loans through reprioritisation of Horizon 2020, RescEU, the Emergency Support Instrument and external instruments.

The Commission is also inviting governments, business leaders, public figures philanthropists, artists and citizens to raise awareness about this global pledging effort. The funds collected will be channelled into three strands: diagnostics, treatments and vaccines.

The countdown to the start of marathon began on the first day of the 2020 World Immunisation Week organised by the United Nations.

The theme this year is #VaccinesWork for All and the campaign will focus on how vaccines, as well as the people who develop, deliver and receive them, work to protect the health of everyone, everywhere.

The worldwide pledging effort – the Coronavirus Global Response - runs until the end of May.

Further information about the effort and how to get involved on the Coronavirus Global Response website

Coronavirus Global Response - background guide

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