Britain to donate 20m AztraZeneca vaccine shots

Sajid Javid ‘looking at’ vaccine mandate for NHS staff

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At the G20 Summit of world leaders in Rome, the Prime Minister is to announce that his Government is to donate surplus doses of the Oxford-AstraZeneca jab that are not needed for the UK booster programme to the international jabs organisation Covax. His promise comes on top of 10 million doses already given to the international vaccine organisation by the UK and a further 10 million to be gifted to developing countries over the next few weeks.

Ministers also previously announced plans to donate all the 20 million Janssen doses ordered by the Government to Covax and to developing countries.

Officials estimate that the UK will have donated 30.6million inoculations to the global effort against the Covid pandemic this year.

Oxford-AstraZeneca, developed in the UK on a not-for-profit basis, is the world’s most widely used vaccine, accounting for more than half of all Covax deliveries. Around 1.5 billion doses have been used in more than 170 countries.

Mr Johnson will today promise his Government will donate at least 20 million more Oxford doses in 2022. It will mean half of the UK’s total order of the AZ vaccine will go to countries in need.

Janssen aims to prioritise deliveries to countries based on need so Covax will get the much-needed inoculations as soon as they come off the production line in 2022.

Today’s announcement means that the UK has now set out how 70 percent of the 100 million vaccines we have pledged to share with poor nations have been or will be delivered.

At a meeting of G20 leaders at the summit today, the Prime Minister will laud the importance of immunisation in allowing the world to recover from the pandemic.

He will call on G20 leaders to do everything to increase supplies to those that need them, either through direct donation or encouraging pharmaceutical companies to adopt the Oxford-AstraZeneca model which puts people over profit.

Addressing the G20 Summit, the Prime Minister will say: “Our first priority at the G20 must be to press ahead with the rapid, equitable and global distribution of vaccines.”

At the G7 Summit in Cornwall earlier this year, world leaders agreed to work to vaccinate the world by the end of 2022.

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