Discorso del Segretario Generale al Vertice Mondiale sulla Salute


New York/Online, 21 May 2021

Good morning, good afternoon, and good evening.

From the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, I warned that no one is safe until everyone is safe.

I was deeply concerned by the possibility of a dangerous two-speed response.
Sadly, that concern was justified.

Grossly unequal access to vaccines, tests, medicines and supplies, including oxygen, have left poorer countries at the mercy of the virus.

Recent surges of COVID-19 in India, South America and other regions have left people literally gasping for breath before our eyes.

The pandemic is still very much with us, thriving and mutating.

As winter approaches in the Global South, I fear the worst is yet to come.

Ladies and gentlemen,

Vaccinating quickly and thoroughly around the world, together with continued public health
measures, are the only way to end the pandemic and prevent more dangerous variants from gaining a foothold.

But so far, more than 82 percent of the world’s vaccine doses have gone to affluent countries. Just 0.3 percent have gone to low-income countries.

The G20’s Rome Declaration is a significant step to provide equal access to vaccines.

We now need a follow-up mechanism, backed by the political will to translate the Declaration into a global vaccination plan.

I repeat my call for the G20 to set up a Task Force that brings together all countries with vaccine production capacities, the World Health Organization, the ACT-Accelerator partners and international financial institutions, along with pharmaceutical companies and other key

The Task Force should address equitable global distribution by using the COVAX facility.

It should aim to at least double manufacturing capacity by exploring all options, from voluntary licenses and technology transfers to patent pooling and flexibility on intellectual property rights.

The G20 Task Force should be co-convened at the highest levels by the major powers who hold most of the global supply and production capacity, together with the multilateral system.

I am ready to mobilize the entire United Nations System to support this effort.

The Task Force must leverage the ACT-Accelerator and its COVAX Facility.

By now, COVAX should have delivered 170 million doses around the world.

But due to vaccine nationalism, limited production capacity and lack of funding, that figure is just 65 million.

I call on G20 countries to lead by example and contribute their full share of funding.

An investment of billions could end up saving trillions – and saving lives.

Ladies and gentlemen,

A global coordinated effort on vaccines can end this pandemic. But it will not help prevent the next.

I fully support last week’s bold recommendations from the Independent Panel for Pandemic
Preparedness and Response.

The world needs political commitment at the highest level to take internationally coordinated, cross-cutting measures and transform global pandemic preparedness.

The bedrock of the recovery from COVID-19, and of preventing and addressing future health crises, is universal health coverage, and robust primary health care systems.

These are essential to achieve SDG3 and the entire 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

Ladies and gentlemen,

It is time for decisive action.

I urge G20 countries, in collaboration with the United Nations, to assume a strong leadership role in ending this devastating global pandemic.

Together, we can and must build a healthier, safer, fairer and more sustainable world.

Thank you.