The Green Party strongly supports today’s commitment by the United States joining the call to waive the morally indefensible pharmaceutical patents on the COVID-19 vaccine in order to make it accessible to Developing World communities.
“It has been deeply disappointing that so far New Zealand has refused to support the call by India, South Africa, and other nations to ease trade rules that would make vaccines affordable. We expect the New Zealand Government to follow the lead of the Biden-Harris administration to put human lives before the interests of multi-billion dollar pharma companies.
“It is a huge relief that the US has come to the table to support a People’s Vaccine. The sooner populations across the world are vaccinated, the sooner we will all be safe. As our own Prime Minister has said ‘no countries are safe until all countries are safe’.
“The need for a People’s Vaccine has become more evident in recent weeks with India seeing a heart-breaking COVID-19 spike. It is devastating to know that it has taken the world so long to act. We hope New Zealand takes a strong position as a matter of urgency to extended the waiver to all COVID-19 technologies and ensure that negotiations are transparent about the language of the waiver.
“Experts agree that mutations are more likely to develop the longer a population goes unvaccinated. It is imperative that we vaccinate our global population to keep everyone safe. Support [for] fair and equitable access to vaccinations for everyone, no matter where they come from, is now an imperative to our own well-being and ability to face this global crisis”.