A virtual international summit dedicated to covid-19 resulted in new financial commitments of more than 3 billion dollars, announced the White House, which is struggling, in turn, to finance its own policy to combat the pandemic.
Of this amount, US$2 billion will be allocated to an “immediate” response to the health emergency, and US$962 million to a World Bank fund to prevent future pandemics, according to the US Executive.
The United States announced that it will increase its participation in this fund by US$ 200 million, bringing its total contribution to US$ 450 million.
After the country surpassed the million-death mark by Covid-19 this Thursday, the White House urged “not to give in to complacency and maintain a strong political will” in the fight against the pandemic.
In a joint statement, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen and US President Joe Biden pledged to work together to solve the logistical problems with administering vaccines in poor countries.
The summit was co-sponsored by the United States, Germany (current president of the G7), Indonesia (current president of the G20), Senegal by the African Union and Belize by CARIcom (Caribbean countries).
In September, at a first meeting, Biden had asked for investments to reach 70% of people vaccinated in each country in a year. But this time he was weakened, failing to get Congress to give him the resources he needs.
The president then asked lawmakers to vote $22.5 billion in emergency COVID funds, including $5 billion for use across borders.
The United States has already shipped 500 million doses of vaccines to more than 100 countries.
However, parliamentary negotiations have resulted, for the time being, in a new package of 10 billion dollars, but without funds earmarked for global immunization.
On Capitol Hill, the opposition was particularly critical of resources going to other countries.
Without additional funding, “the United States will not be able to buy new life-saving treatments. The United States will be less able to limit the spread of new variants from around the world. The United States will be less able to continue vaccinating the world … to save lives here and elsewhere,” the White House warned.
In his statement, in which he announced the one million dead mark, Biden said it was “essential” that Congress continue to support efforts to combat the pandemic.