Merkel defends patent protection for vaccines

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At their summit, the EU’s heads of state and government will discuss, among other things, the progress of the Covid vaccination campaign and the global distribution of vaccines…reports Asian Lite News.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel defended patent protection for Covid-19 vaccines in a government statement in the Bundestag or the lower house of Parliament.

“A politically enforced release of patents is, in my opinion, the wrong way to go,” Merkel said on Thursday.

She said she was convinced that “we need to increase the production of vaccines on the basis of licenses as quickly as possible”.

The world will “continue to depend on vaccines being developed in the future”, Merkel said in the German government’s statement on the June 24-25 European Council meeting in Brussels.

“This will only succeed if the protection of intellectual property is not overridden but is preserved.”

At their summit, the EU’s heads of state and government will discuss, among other things, the progress of the Covid vaccination campaign and the global distribution of vaccines.

Merkel emphasised that the decision to jointly procure vaccines in Europe was right.

“Anything else might have given some member states short-term advantages but would have severely disrupted life in the internal market.”

Till date, more than 27.8 million people in Germany had been fully vaccinated, bringing the country’s vaccination rate to 33.5 per cent, according to the Robert Koch Institute (RKI).

More than 43.4 million people received at least one vaccine dose.

“The pandemic can only be defeated globally and the key to this is vaccination,” Merkel stressed.

It is therefore important that the G7 countries (Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the UK and the US) aim to distribute 2.3 billion vaccine doses to the developing countries by 2022.

Caution against Delta variant

Although the current infection situation in Germany was “encouraging,” Merkel called for further caution over the Covid-19 crisis during her last government question session in the Bundestag.

“Even if the third wave has been impressively broken, the pandemic is not over yet,” said Merkel. “We are still on thin ice.” Keeping distance, hygiene and the use of protective masks in certain situations were still “important protective measures and will remain important,” she added, Xinhua reported.

Germany’s incidence rate of Covid-19 cases per 100,000 inhabitants in the past seven days continued to fall to 7.2 on Wednesday, according to the Robert Koch Institute (RKI). A week ago, the country’s seven-day incidence rate stood at 13.

Merkel highlighted the threat posed by the spreading of coronavirus mutations. “We must not now lightly risk what we have achieved together,” said Merkel.

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