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Egypt Calls for Supporting Developing Countries to Expand COVID-19 Vaccine Production

Egypt Calls for Supporting Developing Countries to Expand COVID-19 Vaccine Production

Sunday, 18 April, 2021 - 08:30
A mosque is disinfected in Cairo last week. (EPA)

Egypt called on Saturday for supporting developing countries with manufacturing capabilities to expand COVID-19 vaccine production.

It stressed the importance of concerted international efforts to address the repercussions of the pandemic, especially those related to the provision of vaccines.

Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry referred to the challenges facing the international system to ensure the equitable provision of the vaccine for all affected countries.

Addressing a United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) virtual meeting in New York, he criticized export restrictions applied on manufacturing companies that has allowed developed countries to “monopolize production and prolong the health crisis.”

He further stressed the importance of the continued financial support for COVAX and developing countries with manufacturing capacities to expand the scope of vaccine production.

COVAX was established by the Geneva-based GAVI vaccine alliance and the World Health Organization (WHO) for the equitable distribution of vaccines.

Shoukry suggested studying various alternatives to achieve this goal. These include the temporary exemption from some of the obligations under the Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights and the swift and effective response to Africa’s needs.

According to a Foreign Ministry statement, Shoukry’s participation at the UN meeting is part of Egypt’s continued international efforts to provide equitable access to the vaccines, especially for developing and African nations.

Egypt’s coronavirus curve has continued to rise. The health ministry reported on Friday 841 new cases and 42 deaths.

The country has confirmed 214,639 infections, 162,170 recoveries and 12,653 fatalities.

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