Europe appeals to the US to 'open the market' for vaccines

Europe appeals to the US to 'open the market' for vaccines
Merkel wishes for the US to export more vaccines to the rest of the world, like the EU has done with its own production. Credit: Belga

Angela Merkel called on the United States on Saturday to open the "market" to allow exports of vaccines and their components.

"I wish that now that a large part of the American population has been vaccinated, we can have a free exchange of components and also an opening of the vaccine market," said the German Chancellor at a press conference, during the EU Summit in Porto, Portugal.

"The European Union has always exported a large part of its production to the world and so this should also be followed by others," Merkel emphasised.

French President Emmanuel Macron also on Saturday called on the "Anglo-Saxons" to stop "blocking" exports.

He stressed that out of 110 million doses produced in Europe, the EU had exported 45 million and kept 65 million. Meanwhile, he added, "100% of vaccines produced in the United States of America go to the American market."

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During the Summit, the German Chancellor also reiterated her opposition to a lifting of patents on vaccines, which was recently proposed by US President Joe Biden.

"I reiterate that I do not believe that the lifting of patents is the solution to make vaccines available to more people," said Merkel. "I believe that business creativity and innovation is necessary and for me that includes patents," she added.

Pope Francis on Saturday, on the other hand, supported the proposal to lift patents on vaccines against Covid-19, in order to enable an acceleration of the dissemination of vaccines to poor countries.

The Brussels Times

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