Joe Biden formally announces the purchase and donation of 500 million vaccines from Pfizer

U.S. President Joe Biden said Thursday that the United States will not ask for anything in return for vaccines against covid-19 that will be donated to other countries.

In statements to the media accompanying him in Cornwall, in the southwest of the United Kingdom, where he will attend the G7 summit, Joe Biden officially announced the purchase and donation of 500 million vaccines to the pharmaceutical company Pfizer to supply low-income countries.

Biden said that the U.S. would provide the vaccines to other countries “with no strings attached,” adding that the “vaccine donations don’t include pressure for favors or potential concessions. We’re doing this to save lives, to end this pandemic. That’s it.” China and Russia have been accused of making demands in exchange for supplies of their vaccines.

Biden, warning of the threat of Covid-19 variants, said that donating the vaccines to other nations was in “America’s self-interest.”

“As long as the virus rages elsewhere, there’s a risk of new mutations that could threaten our people,” Biden said.

Biden said it is the largest single purchase and donation of Covid-19 vaccines ever made by any country.

The U.S. will begin delivering the doses in August, so 200 million vaccines will be delivered by the end of this year and the rest in the first half of 2022.

The vaccines will be distributed through the WHO-sponsored COVAX mechanism.

Pfizer will manufacture the doses at several of its plants in the United States, including Kalamazoo, Michigan; MacPherson, Kansas; Chesterfield, Missouri; and Andover, Massachusetts.

Biden made the statements following a meeting with British Prime Minister Boris Johnson in Carbis Bay, Cornwall, on Thursday.

Topics discussed at the meeting included vaccines, climate change and the new Atlantic Charter, which the two leaders signed today.

The United Kingdom is the first stop on Biden’s international tour, his first overseas trip since taking office, which includes visits to Brussels and Geneva.

Photo Source: AP

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