Business & Finance
Amnesty International blames Western greed for depriving Africa of COVID-19 vaccines
30 March 2022 -

Rights group Amnesty International has blamed low COVID-19 vaccination rates in Africa on Western countries' self-interest and corporate greed, BBC News reported on Tuesday.

According to Amnesty, millions of people in sub-Saharan Africa have been deprived of vaccines as a result.

EU member states, the UK and the US have been accused of stockpiling more vaccines than they needed, while turning a blind eye to large pharmaceuticals' refusal to share their technology to enable wider distribution of vaccines.

In its latest report, Amnesty International said its "the greatest betrayal of our times".

Amnesty International criticised rich countries for "false promises and empty slogans" and for widening global inequality during the pandemic.

The human rights group said that in 2021, Pfizer (NYSE:PFE), BioNTech (Nasdaq:BNTX) and Moderna Inc (Nasdaq:MRNA) had projected USD54bn in profits, yet supplied less than 2% of their vaccines to low-income countries.

Reportedly, about 8% of Africans had been vaccinated against COVID-19 by the end of 2021, the lowest rate in the world.

Also, vaccination distribution continues to be painfully slow across the continent, igniting fears of deepening poverty and a prolonged economic recovery, the BBC noted.

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