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For Immediate Release

Press Release

UK Vaccine Donations Are a Shamefully Inadequate PR Move, Campaigners Say

WASHINGTON -

Vaccine equity campaigners have branded the British government’s vaccine donations, announced today, as “shamefully inadequate” and “shoddy PR” on a day that the UK blocks efforts to waive intellectual property on Covid-19 vaccines and treatments.

An intellectual property waiver would allow many of the countries receiving the UK’s doses to produce their own vaccines in far greater quantities than donations will achieve.

Global Justice Now has condemned suggestions from the Foreign Secretary that some doses would be distributed on a “strategic basis”. The group said “it shouldn’t be up to Dominic Raab to decide a country is strategically useful enough to deserve some of the UK’s leftover doses”

Today the World Trade Organisation’s (WTO) General Council will approve plans to delay a decision on waiving intellectual property on Covid-19 vaccines and treatments, as the UK and Germany continue to oppose the move.

Nick Dearden, Director of Global Justice Now, said:

“Britain’s donations today are shamefully inadequate. And the government wants to use this as a form of diplomacy, offering many doses on the basis of their strategic interests. This is a global health crisis, not an opportunity for vain self-promotion.

“Worse still, this shoddy piece of PR went out on the very day the UK is blocking real solutions at the World Trade Organisation that would allow many of these countries to produce their own vaccines in far greater quantities than donations will ever achieve.

“It shouldn’t be up to Dominic Raab to decide a country is strategically useful enough to deserve some of the UK’s leftover doses. We should be building domestic manufacturing in those countries by waiving vaccine intellectual property and sharing technological know-how.”

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Global Justice Now is a democratic social justice organisation working as part of a global movement to challenge the powerful and create a more just and equal world. We mobilise people in the UK for change, and act in solidarity with those fighting injustice, particularly in the global south.

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