Boris Johnson will use the G7 summit in Cornwall to issue a rallying cry for world leaders to pledge to vaccinate the globe against Covid-19 within 18 months
- Boris Johnson will call on world leaders to agree a plan to end the pandemic
- This is by ensuring every person has access to a jab within the next 18 months
- The Prime Minister hailed the summit, which will be held in Cornwall, as ‘historic’
- The G7 starts on Friday, when the leaders will gather for a face-to-face meeting
Boris Johnson will use the G7 summit to secure a global pledge to vaccinate the world’s population against Covid-19 by the end of 2022.
The Prime Minister will call on world leaders to agree a plan to end the pandemic by ensuring every person has access to a jab within the next 18 months.
He hailed the summit, which will be held in Cornwall, as ‘historic’. The G7 starts on Friday, when the leaders will gather for a face-to-face meeting.
Mr Johnson said the premiers – which include United States President Joe Biden on his first foreign visit since taking office – must use the event to ‘rise to the greatest challenge’ since the war.
The Prime Minister (pictured getting his second jab last week) will call on world leaders to agree a plan to end the pandemic by ensuring every person has access to a jab within the next 18 months
Speaking ahead of the summit, Mr Johnson said: ‘The world is looking to us to rise to the greatest challenge of the post-war era: defeating Covid and leading a global recovery driven by our shared values.
‘Vaccinating the world by the end of next year would be the single greatest feat in medical history.
‘I’m calling on my fellow G7 leaders to join us to end to this terrible pandemic and pledge will we never allow the devastation wreaked by coronavirus to happen again.’
The leaders of the G7 will arrive in Carbis Bay, Cornwall, for three days of meetings.
They will be joined virtually by experts, including the UK Government’s Chief Scientific Adviser Sir Patrick Vallance, environmentalist Sir David Attenborough and philanthropist Melinda Gates.
On Saturday, the G7 leaders will be joined either in person or virtually by their counterparts from Australia, South Africa, South Korea and India to discuss health and climate change.
The Prime Minister is expected to call for a stepping up of the manufacture of vaccines, lowering barriers to the international distribution of jabs and sharing surplus doses with developing countries, both bilaterally and through Covax, a World Health Organisation scheme.
Mr Johnson will also ask for their support for the Global Pandemic Radar – a new surveillance system that will protect immunisation programmes against new Covid variants through early detection.
The summit comes after the Government came under pressure to donate more doses to low- income countries.
MPs last week wrote to the Prime Minister urging him to pledge to donate one dose abroad for every one administered in the UK.
Germany, France and Italy have committed to donating at least 100 million vaccine doses through Covax before the end of the year.
Health Secretary Matt Hancock last week said the UK would look to donate spare doses, in line with a Government pledge made in February, but added: ‘At the moment we don’t have any excess doses. We’re just getting them into arms as quickly as possible.’
Ministers are in a race to vaccinate more Britons in the face of new variants, to save the next phase of lockdown reopening on June 21.
The summit will also discuss climate change and expanding girls’ education around the world.
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