G20 leaders urged to provide urgent funds for COVID vaccines, drugs, tests

FILE PHOTO: The word
FILE PHOTO: The word "COVID-19" is reflected in a drop on a syringe needle in this illustration taken November 9, 2020. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration//File Photo

November 19, 2020

GENEVA (Reuters) – G20 leaders holding a virtual summit this weekend must help close a funding gap to buy vaccines, drugs and tests to combat the COVID-19 pandemic, a letter from South Africa’s president, Norway’s prime minister, the WHO chief and the European Commission President said.

The letter, seen by Reuters, said: “A commitment by G20 leaders at the G20 summit in Riyadh to invest substantially in the ACT (Access to COVID-19 Tools) Accelerator’s immediate funding gap of US $4.5 billion will immediately save lives, lay the groundwork for mass procurement and delivery of COVID-19 tools around the world, and provide an exit strategy out of this global economic and human crisis.”

(Reporting by Stephanie Nebehay; Editing by Catherine Evans)