- Driven by the COVID-19 Delta variant, cases and deaths are once again rising globally.
- Although COVID-19 vaccines save lives, they do not stop the virus transmission.
- 36% of the world’s population is now fully vaccinated. But in Africa, it’s only 6%.
WHO Director-General’s opening remarks at the meeting of G20 Health and Finance Ministers – 29 October 2021:
Your Excellency Daniele Franco,
Your Excellency Roberto Speranza,
Thank you for the opportunity to join you today.
I’m sure that when this meeting was first planned, we all hoped the pandemic would be over. It’s not.
Driven by the Delta variant, cases and deaths are once again rising globally, including in many of your own countries.
Although vaccines save lives, they do not stop transmission, which is why every country must continue to use every tool, including tailored public health and social measures, in combination with tests, treatments and vaccines.
Yesterday, WHO and our partners published the new Strategic Plan and Budget for the Access to COVID-19 Tools Accelerator, with an ask of 23.4 billion U.S. dollars to make sure tests, treatments and vaccines go where they are needed most.
36% of the world’s population is now fully vaccinated. But in Africa, it’s only 6%.
Thank you for recognizing the importance of WHO‘s targets to vaccinate at least 40 percent of the population of all countries by the end of 2021, and 70 percent by mid-2022.
To achieve our 40% target, we need an additional 550 million doses. That’s about 10 days’ production. As my friend Gordon Brown says, more than half that number is sitting unused in your countries, and could be immediately deployed.
It’s true that a small group of countries have some limitations, which we are working to address.
But for the majority of countries, it’s simply a matter of insufficient supply.