EU states that US position on patent virus waiver is not a “magic bullet”

Portugal, Porto-European Union leaders have stepped up criticism of the US call to waive the COVID-19 vaccine patent on Saturday, arguing that the move will not provide short-term or medium-term relief. Instead, they urged Washington to lift export restrictions if they wanted to have a global impact on the pandemic.

“In the short term, I don’t think it’s a silver bullet,” said Charles Michel, chairman of the Council of the European Union, on the second day of the EU summit in Portugal. French President Emmanuel Macron argued that prioritizing the intellectual property debate was “a false debate.”

Instead, they joined the previous EU call for U.S. President Joe Biden to begin boosting U.S. vaccine exports to contain the global COVID-19 crisis, which is the most urgent need. Claimed to be.

“We encourage all partners to promote the export of (vaccine) doses,” Michelle said.

The U.S. has severely restricted exports of U.S.-made vaccines, so it can inoculate its own population first, but the EU will become the world’s leading provider and move out of the block of 27 countries. can do. Its 446 million inhabitants. The EU distributed about 200 million doses within the block, but about the same amount was exported abroad to almost 90 countries.

“First of all, you have to open,” Macron said. “In the United States, in the United Kingdom, 100% of what is produced is used in the domestic market,” Macron said. “First of all, Anglo-Saxons must stop the export ban.”

The EU is trying to regain its diplomatic initiative on the vaccine after Biden has expressed surprising support for removing patent protection for the COVID-19 vaccine.

Macron and other EU leaders argue that, in the first place, capacity needs to be increased by reconverting factories so that vaccine production can begin quickly through technology transfer. .. Developed countries should also increase vaccine donations to poor countries.

Macron then said the patent waiver debate could begin to influence.

“Today, there are no factories in the world that cannot produce doses for poor countries due to patent issues,” Macron said.