One of the 150 Global Religious Leaders advocating for the immunisation of the world against COVID-19, Archbishop Thabo Makgoba, has welcomed a decision by US President Joe Biden’s administration, to support a temporary waiver on intellectual property on COVID-19 vaccines.
On Wednesday night US Trade Representative, Katherine Tai, released a statement saying they believe in intellectual property rights.
These extraordinary times and circumstances of call for extraordinary measures.
— Ambassador Katherine Tai (@AmbassadorTai) May 5, 2021
However, she said it’s important to service the end of the pandemic by supporting the waiver proposal at the World Trade Organization negotiations.
South Africa and India are the leading campaigners for the waiver, on behalf of emerging economies. More than 90 other countries have indicated their support for the waiver.
Makgoba says the decision by the US to support the waiver is commendable.
“This decision will go a long way to putting moral pressure and political pressure to bear on the World Trade Organisation (WHO) to indeed temporarily suspend these patents on these vaccines. We need to share the technology know-how. We need to share the licenses. We need to enable others to scale up in these vaccines, particularly those in our continent and the Global South because that is the only way we can attain population immunity,” says Makgoba.
Biden’s decision to support a call to waiver IP on COVID-19 vaccines, drugs commended: