----- Vaccines & economic recovery
While we are frustrated by vaccine shortages, developing countries have received only a trickle. At this rate, their people will be only be fully vaccinated by 2024, likely long after current vaccines have been rendered useless by multiple mutations of the virus. By December, more than 10 billion vaccine doses had been preordered mostly by high-income countries comprising only 14% of the world's population. Vaccine nationalism is not only selfish, it could derail any chance for an early global economic recovery. A study by the International Chamber of Commerce found that without ensuring equitable vaccination for developing economies, the total cost to the world varies between US$ 1.5–9.2 trillion.
The Access to COVID-19 Tools (ACT) Accelerator was created by a consortium of global partners to accelerate the development, production, and equitable access to COVID-19 tests, treatments, and vaccines. It has been fully costed at US$38 billion, a relative pittance, but is still short US$23 billion. Like vaccines, international cooperation seems to be scarce. Given that Canada has almost committed its full fair share, it should use its leadership position to encourage other countries to do likewise.
Stephen St. Denis