FACT SHEET: President Biden's Global COVID-19 Summit: Ending the Pandemic and Building Back Better
Today, President Biden convened heads of state and leaders from international organizations, the private sector, philanthropies, non-government organizations, and other partners for the Global COVID-19 Summit: Ending the Pandemic and Building Back Better, a virtual summit on the margins of the UN General Assembly.
The President called on leaders to elevate global ambition to end the COVID-19 pandemic in 2022 and to build back better global health security to prevent and prepare for future pandemics. As emerging variants have set back global response efforts, President Biden challenged the world to advance this agenda with new, focused urgency and to cooperate to rapidly advance our collective response to this crisis to secure our future.
Conquering COVID-19: Measuring Progress, Collective Action, Common Targets
Throughout the Summit, world leaders answered the President's call and embraced a set of ambitious global targets across four themes:
- Vaccinate the World by enhancing equitable access to vaccines and getting shots in arms;
- Save Lives Now by solving the oxygen crisis and making tests, therapeutics, and personal protective equipment (PPE) widely available;
- Build Back Better by preparing in all countries, establishing a sustainable health security financing mechanism, and demonstrating political leadership for emerging threats to prepare for and prevent future pandemics; and
- Calling the World to Account by aligning around common global targets, tracking progress, and supporting one another in fulfilling our commitments.
The full set of targets is available here.
New U.S. Commitments toward Ending the Pandemic and Building Back Better
President Biden has prioritized ending the COVID-19 pandemic since day one, when he launched the National Strategy on COVID-19 Response and Pandemic Preparedness and took critical steps to elevate pandemic preparedness and response as a top national security priority. The United States has donated more vaccines than all other countries combined, and earlier this year, launched a comprehensive U.S. COVID-19 Global Response and Recovery Framework.
The United States is leading the way toward ending the pandemic. During his remarks, the President called the world to action and announced several bold new U.S. commitments to accelerate progress toward these targets, including:
Vaccinating the World
- Donate an Additional Half-Billion Pfizer COVID-19 Vaccines to the World: Today, President Biden will announce that the U.S. is donating an additional half a billion Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccines to low and lower-middle income countries around the globe, with shipments starting in January 2022. This monumental commitment brings the total number of vaccines donated by the U.S. to over 1.1 billion doses, including the 500 million Pfizer-BioNTech doses the U.S. already purchased in June and began shipping in August. With today's announcement, the U.S. is donating three doses to the world for every one shot it has administered at home. To date, the U.S. has already shipped nearly 160 million doses to 100 countries – donating more vaccines than all other countries combined – for free and with zero strings attached, with millions more shipping each day.
- Getting Shots into Arms: The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) plan to provide an additional $370 million for global vaccine readiness and capacity to get shots in arms where they are most needed. The U.S. International Development Finance Corporation (DFC) will provide more than $383 million in political risk insurance to Gavi, The Vaccine Alliance to facilitate shipments of vaccines to nine countries across three continents, accelerating vaccine delivery to regions in greatest need.
- Expanding Local Production: DFC, with support from our partners and the International Finance Corporation, has invested in several vaccine manufacturing facilities across Africa and India, which will collectively have the capacity to produce 2 billion COVID-19 vaccine doses for developing countries by 2022.
- Expanding Regional Capacity: The United States calls on countries, vaccine manufacturers, and other partners to expand global and regional production of mRNA, viral vector, and/or protein subunit COVID-19 vaccines for low- and lower-middle income countries and to enhance transparency for data on production, availability, and projections for dose manufacturing..
- Enhancing Transparency for Delivered Doses: The United States urges vaccine manufacturers to make information on the supply and distribution of vaccines publicly available, so that countries and global partners can plan how to fill gaps and prioritize vaccine deliveries where they are needed most urgently.
- Support for a COVID-19 TRIPS Waiver: Extraordinary times call for extraordinary measures. The United States supports a waiver of intellectual property protections in the WTO TRIPS Agreement for COVID-19 vaccines in service of ending this pandemic.
Saving Lives Now
- Reducing Disease and Deaths, and Responding Rapidly: USAID and CDC are providing nearly $1.4 billion to reduce morbidity and mortality from COVID-19, mitigate transmission, and strengthen health systems, including to prevent, detect, and respond to pandemic threats. Within this total, USAID is providing $100 million to prioritize rapid response interventions.
- Making Oxygen Available: USAID plans to provide $50 million to expand access to oxygen, with a focus on bulk liquid oxygen.
- Enhancing Testing: CDC will provide $56 million in COVID-19 testing support.
- Strengthening Health Systems to Fight COVID-19: The President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) will provide $250 million to support response efforts by leveraging its existing investments in health systems, infrastructure, and workforce to support screening, testing, PPE, and vaccine readiness and administration, while also combating HIV/AIDS.
- Enhancing the Global Fund: The U.S. is providing $3.5 billion to the Global Fund for its COVID-19 response mechanism.
- Improve the detection, monitoring and mitigation of new COVID-19 variants: The United States will stand up the Center for Forecasting and Outbreak Analytics to support enhanced global variant tracking and analyses capabilities, including through cooperation with those developing the concept of a global pandemic radar, the World Health Organization (WHO)'s Global Hub for Pandemic and Epidemic Intelligence and additional centers through this network.
Building Back Better
- Financing Global Health Security: The United States calls on countries to design and establish a Global Health Security Financial Intermediary Fund (FIF), as recommended by the G20 Presidency's High Level Independent Panel and other international experts. Working with Congress, we will commit $250 million now in seed funding towards a FIF to combat this pandemic, which will also help prevent the next. We have also requested an additional $850 million for the FIF from Congress. Taking action this year will help us further build capacity so that all countries, everywhere, are able to prevent, detect, and respond to biological threats and mitigate outbreaks in their communities. This commitment will build on, and not replace, the $630 million in health security funding and Global Health Security Agenda support in Fiscal Year 2021.
- Catalyze political leadership and attention for biological crises, including by establishing a leader-level entity, such as the Global Health Threats Council (GHTC) in 2021.
- Special Drawing Rights (SDRs): The United States strongly supported the new $650 billion allocation of SDRs to help countries boost reserves and fund critical spending to protect public health and minimize economic scarring. To amplify the benefits of the allocation, we call on countries who can afford to do so to channel some of their SDRs to poor and vulnerable countries through the International Monetary Fund's Poverty Reduction and Growth Trust and through a new Resilience and Sustainability Trust (RST). We encourage other members of the International Monetary Fund to endorse establishing an RST focused on helping countries pursue long-term structural reforms to improve pandemic preparedness and prevention and facilitate investments in a green economy.
- Bringing Health and Finance Leaders Together: The United States supports the G20 Presidency's call-to-action to establish a ministerial health and finance board to strengthen coordination between health and economic policymakers.
Accounting for Action: All Countries and Organizations must play their part
All countries and public and private organizations must commit to urgent actions this fall. The United States will lead by convening others so that, collectively, we take the action necessary to end the pandemic. This is necessary to save lives now, and for all of us—including the private sector—to make a down payment on the resilience of our economic future. Going forward, the United States will champion accountability, in partnership with multilateral mechanisms. The President stressed that a critical element of success in ending the pandemic and building back better will be to hold ourselves and the world accountable by making those investments today. To this end, he announced a new effort to measure progress against our shared targets and maintain global momentum to end the pandemic.
The Secretary of State will convene foreign ministers at the end of the year to update on our collective progress and maintain global urgency to cross the finish line and end the pandemic in 2022.
The United States will champion accountability so that the world can measure our progress and meeting our commitments.
- The United States will work with a range of key partners in tracking results, including partner governments, the United Nations Secretary-General, the Multilateral Leaders' Task Force on COVID-19 Vaccines, Therapeutics and Diagnostics for Developing Countries established by the International Monetary Fund, World Bank, World Trade Organization (WTO) and WHO, the private sector and the philanthropic community.
- In early October 2021, we will bring together the Task Force, members of the private sector, the philanthropic community, and other key partners to analyze data that will enable us to evaluate our collective progress in advance of the G20 Summit, at other international gatherings, and on a regular basis.
- We will work with governments, the international financial institutions and multilateral development banks, companies, foundations, and advocates to track and transparently report progress towards ending the pandemic.
- We will work with global vaccine manufacturers to expand global and regional manufacturing for mRNA, viral vector, and/or protein subunit COVID-19 vaccines and to enhance transparency for data on production and projections for dose manufacturing.
Joseph R. Biden, FACT SHEET: President Biden's Global COVID-19 Summit: Ending the Pandemic and Building Back Better Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/352680