He argued that it was in the interest of both the United States and the world to make vaccination widely and rapidly available everywhere.
“We are going to help lift the world out of this pandemic by working together with our global partners,” Biden said.
He added that tomorrow the G-7 nations would join the United States in describing their vaccine donation commitments.
His country has yet to send any doses abroad or announce a robust plan to share vaccines. Johnson indicated that Britain had millions of doses in surplus stock.
“I think the European Union needs to have at least the same level of ambition as the United States” and be able to make a similar announcement, he told a news conference.
Biden said the United States was sharing its doses “without conditions” or “pressure for favors.”
“We are doing this to save lives, to end this pandemic, and that’s it,” he said.
Biden had faced mounting pressure to outline his global vaccine exchange plan, especially as supply inequalities around the world have become more pronounced and demand for injections in the US has fallen precipitously. in the last weeks.
Joe Biden lands in England on his first trip abroad since the elections
“In times of trouble, Americans reach out to offer help,” Biden said, adding that the American doses would “overwhelm” the global vaccination campaign.
“Our values require us to do everything we can to vaccinate the world against COVID-19.”
The price of the 500 million doses was not disclosed, but it is now established that the US will be the largest donor of COVAX vaccines, in addition to its largest individual donor with a commitment of $ 4 billion ($ 5, 1 billion).
White House officials hope the fast-track distribution program may be the latest example of an issue Biden plans to attack frequently during his week in Europe: that Western democracies, and not rising authoritarian states, can deliver the best. for the world.
White House officials said the 500 million vaccines will ship beginning in August, with the goal of distributing 200 million by the end of the year.
The remaining 300 million doses would ship in the first half of 2022.
After leading the world in new cases and deaths for much of the past year, the rapid vaccination program in the US now positions it among the leaders in global recovery.
Nearly 64 percent of adults in the US have received at least one dose of the vaccine, and the average number of new positive cases and deaths in the US is lower now than at any time since the early days of the pandemic.
The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development projected last week that the U.S. economy would grow at a rate of 6.9 percent this year, making it one of the few nations for which forecasts are more optimistic now than before the pandemic.
US officials hope the summit will conclude with a statement showing the commitment of the G-7 countries and the nations invited to participate to do more to help vaccinate the world and support public health globally.
Global public health groups have aimed to use the G-7 meetings to pressure wealthier democracies to do more to share vaccines with the world.
Biden’s plans received immediate praise.
Tom Hart, acting CEO of The ONE Campaign, a nonprofit that seeks to end poverty, said Biden’s announcement was “the kind of bold leadership that is needed to end this global pandemic.”
“We urge other G-7 countries to follow the example of the United States and donate more doses to COVAX,” he added.
“If ever there was a time for global ambition and action to end the pandemic, it is now.”
Others have asked the United States to do even more.
“Charity is not going to win the war against coronavirus,” said Niko Lusiani, Oxfam America’s director of vaccines.
“At the current rate of vaccination, it would take 57 years for low-income countries to reach the same level of protection as those of the G-7 countries. That is not only morally wrong, but counterproductive given the risk posed by coronavirus mutations. . “