U.S. Secretary of Trade Catherine Day warned that the vaccine against covid-19 must be made more accessible to people around the world in order to end the pandemic and promote economic recovery.
Dai Bingxian said at the meeting of the US Council that the world has made considerable progress in eliminating this epidemic, but there is still much work to be done.
A US official explained: “This work involves the widespread supply of vaccines and addresses inequalities in global vaccine access.”
She emphasized: “Not only public health, our economic recovery also depends on it.”
Dai is expected to discuss the request of developing countries to suspend the intellectual property rights of coronavirus vaccines in order to increase production at the World Trade Organization meeting held over the weekend.
In recent days, the U.S. Secretary of Commerce has met with leaders of major vaccine manufacturers. The topics discussed are the proposal to suspend patents and the possibility of increasing vaccine production and distribution.
White House Chief of Staff Ron Klein said on Sunday that Thailand would “encourage negotiations on expanding vaccine distribution, issuing licenses, and sharing among as many people as possible” and announced in the next few days more details.
A group of Democrats in Congress are asking President Biden’s cabinet to support the plan to suspend patents, stressing that it will save lives and show that people are more important than the profits of pharmaceutical companies.
On the other hand, companies oppose the proposal, believing that the scope of the proposal is too broad and will set a precedent and weaken the momentum for future vaccine development.