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Cornwall's COVID-19 Strong Start

John Kirton, G7 Research Group
June 11, 2021

The G7's Cornwall Summit got off to a strong start, even before it formally began. On arrival at the site, US president Joe Biden announced that the US would donate 500 million vaccine doses within a year to the poor countries that most needed them, and would send the first 80 million within the next three weeks. British prime minister Boris Johnson then promised 100 million. Canadian Prime minister Justin Trudeau added 100 million, twice as many as the one tenth of the US total that Canada is traditionally expected to give. This 700 million total closes in on the 1 billion target G7 leaders will announce in their communiqué in days. They are thus on track to meet or exceed that target, when Japan, German, France, Italy and the European Union promise more than what the ABC triumvirate has.

This fast start backs Boris Johnson's ringing proclamation that he wants his G7 summit to agree to vaccinate everyone everywhere on the planet by the end of next year. To do this, Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director General of the World Health Organization, said we need 11 billion doses. So starting with one billion added in one day to those that were there before is a strong start. This down payment can and will be built on when the leaders of democratic Australia and Korea join their G7 colleagues at Cornwall on the summit's final day, and then in the coming months, culminating at the G20 summit in October, when Russia and China can add massive amounts of the good vaccines they have invented and produced on their own.

Yet the big question is how many doses will be delivered how fast into people's arms, so that two weeks later, their COVID-19 conquering antibodies will spring to life. Every day of delay means too many more people unnecessarily die. Yet every dose delivered into arms strengthens the victorious spiral, of shrinking infections and variants arising outside G7 members and invading them inside, leaving them with more spares to share with the poor to win the war in the fullest and fastest way.

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