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More than 160 former world leaders and global figures have called on the UK and other rich countries to immediately airlift millions of surplus Covid vaccines to less developed nations.

They say it would be unethical for doses to be wasted while thousands are dying with the virus every day.

The call comes in a letter, organised by former prime minister Gordon Brown.

It is addressed to Italian PM Mario Draghi, who is hosting the G20 group of major economies in Rome this weekend.

The letter's signatories include 36 former presidents, 30 ex-prime ministers and another 100 influential global figures.

  • What difference could a billion jabs make?
  • How many vaccines are rich countries sharing?

While more than six billion Covid vaccine doses have been administered worldwide, they say 70% of these were administered by only a few countries and just 2% of people in low-income countries have received a jab.

The letter says that between them the US, EU, UK and Canada will have 240 million unused vaccines by the end of this month, which could be airlifted immediately to countries most in need.

Millions more vaccines should be transferred each month, totally 1.1 billion in the next four months, it adds.

If this is achieved, it says the World Health Organization's target for 70% of all adults to be vaccinated by spring next year can be met.

"Without a detailed plan, 100 million vaccine doses will have passed their use-by date at the end of the year," the letter says.

"If we do not act quickly, that figure could exceed 200 million by the end of January 2022."


Global vaccine rollout

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The World
Africa
Asia
Europe
Middle East
Latin America & Caribbean
North America
Oceania

Location

Doses per 100 people

Total doses

World

87.2

6,868,024,815

China

155.3

2,255,947,444

India

73.4

1,022,267,850

US

123.0

413,645,478

Brazil

125.3

268,199,870

Japan

146.8

185,079,015

Indonesia

65.5

180,948,208

Turkey

135.5

115,255,712

Mexico

88.4

115,185,985

Germany

132.1

110,840,177

Russia

69.1

100,766,655

Pakistan

44.7

100,741,762

France

144.9

97,886,077

UK

139.6

95,226,529

Italy

147.0

88,748,661

Iran

93.5

79,533,819

South Korea

146.8

75,308,637

Vietnam

74.3

72,929,311

Spain

152.5

71,275,614

Thailand

95.2

66,592,321

Bangladesh

36.2

60,153,454

Canada

152.8

58,161,185

Argentina

127.3

58,049,997

Philippines

50.2

55,715,693

Malaysia

149.7

49,069,291

Colombia

89.1

45,687,674

Saudi Arabia

128.1

45,266,839

Morocco

121.2

45,249,522

Poland

102.2

38,621,872

Chile

183.7

35,300,412

Australia

133.3

34,364,950

Peru

99.7

33,249,095

Sri Lanka

130.7

28,102,233

Cambodia

160.8

27,243,478

Cuba

223.3

25,275,700

Uzbekistan

74.0

25,101,646

Netherlands

139.1

23,884,413

Egypt

22.2

23,177,181

Taiwan

93.4

22,283,271

Ecuador

120.1

21,492,532

South Africa

35.5

21,300,098

United Arab Emirates

208.9

20,875,213

Belgium

144.4

16,791,676

Portugal

159.0

16,163,885

Venezuela

56.2

16,127,242

Ukraine

36.7

15,955,360

Israel

180.2

15,842,510

Myanmar

28.8

15,797,703

Kazakhstan

81.5

15,477,640

Nepal

50.7

15,048,288

Sweden

141.1

14,335,108

Algeria

31.6

14,082,920

Dominican Republic

119.1

13,046,499

Greece

121.1

12,558,035

Hungary

125.7

12,111,107

Czech Republic

111.5

11,960,709

Romania

61.4

11,740,280

Austria

125.8

11,378,315

Switzerland

125.5

10,933,659

Singapore

169.8

10,012,470

Azerbaijan

91.8

9,383,303

Tunisia

74.4

8,885,559

Denmark

151.8

8,827,168

Iraq

20.7

8,506,934

Guatemala

45.6

8,316,740

El Salvador

127.5

8,313,116

Nigeria

3.9

8,188,833

Finland

144.3

8,007,597

Norway

144.9

7,919,010

Turkmenistan

123.9

7,580,976

Jordan

71.6

7,354,774

Ireland

146.4

7,297,243

Serbia

100.6

6,948,020

Bolivia

58.6

6,931,689

New Zealand

136.3

6,623,500

Honduras

65.6

6,605,470

Uruguay

187.9

6,548,306

Costa Rica

119.2

6,124,445

Zimbabwe

38.7

5,836,363

Oman

108.7

5,679,984

Angola

16.7

5,661,085

Panama

123.3

5,403,579

Rwanda

40.6

5,394,793

Paraguay

71.5

5,165,112

Kenya

9.0

4,930,336

Qatar

164.2

4,811,693

Slovakia

87.6

4,784,937

Tajikistan

47.5

4,631,515

Belarus

47.4

4,472,001

Laos

59.7

4,402,770

Mongolia

131.9

4,392,350

Ethiopia

3.6

4,265,144

Mozambique

11.8

3,799,385

Croatia

87.2

3,557,853

Lithuania

124.5

3,349,746

Lebanon

47.1

3,189,658

Ivory Coast

11.1

3,005,741

Uganda

6.3

2,990,507

Bahrain

156.8

2,741,537

Bulgaria

39.6

2,728,389

Ghana

8.6

2,727,537

Kuwait

54.9

2,375,455

Afghanistan

5.9

2,369,625

Palestinian Territories

44.1

2,301,812

Slovenia

110.4

2,294,768

Guinea

15.7

2,124,390

Senegal

11.4

1,961,144

Georgia

48.3

1,920,934

Albania

64.9

1,865,942

Latvia

99.8

1,863,214

Libya

26.0

1,809,365

Mauritius

135.5

1,725,697

Kyrgyzstan

25.2

1,667,139

Sudan

3.7

1,659,666

North Macedonia

76.4

1,590,219

Kosovo

86.3

1,532,585

Moldova

37.0

1,486,884

Estonia

106.8

1,415,740

Nicaragua

19.5

1,306,694

Mauritania

27.2

1,300,831

Togo

15.2

1,287,154

Bosnia and Herzegovina

38.1

1,242,203

Cyprus

134.3

1,203,326

Trinidad and Tobago

85.7

1,202,702

Malawi

6.0

1,183,633

Fiji

125.9

1,136,909

Bhutan

141.5

1,103,506

Syria

4.9

902,519

Jamaica

30.1

893,629

Tanzania

1.4

885,579

Botswana

36.8

882,831

Zambia

4.6

871,881

Malta

168.5

866,963

Timor-Leste

63.7

855,619

Luxembourg

127.0

806,150

Niger

3.2

803,146

Maldives

137.5

747,719

Armenia

22.8

677,032

Somalia

3.9

635,822

Guyana

77.3

610,721

Brunei

133.2

588,206

Mali

2.8

584,773

Iceland

165.4

567,789

Madagascar

2.0

566,265

Namibia

20.7

535,048

Montenegro

78.7

494,110

Cameroon

1.8

490,604

Cape Verde

85.9

482,946

Suriname

74.7

442,033

Equatorial Guinea

29.3

424,653

Congo

7.2

410,016

Comoros

45.9

407,792

Sierra Leone

4.9

396,196

Lesotho

17.8

383,341

Yemen

1.2

356,173

Liberia

6.8

349,837

Belize

85.1

344,463

Central African Republic

6.5

321,343

Burkina Faso

1.4

297,231

Eswatini

23.1

270,643

Barbados

92.2

265,301

Benin

2.0

252,698

Bahamas

61.5

244,223

Gambia

9.7

241,290

Gabon

9.5

217,606

Chad

1.2

199,516

Papua New Guinea

2.1

194,962

Samoa

94.3

188,664

Jersey

163.3

165,076

Seychelles

161.1

159,392

DR Congo

0.2

144,980

Solomon Islands

20.2

141,920

Isle of Man

154.1

131,628

South Sudan

1.1

122,889

Guinea-Bissau

6.0

121,501

Cayman Islands

168.1

111,772

Haiti

1.0

110,603

Sao Tome and Principe

46.4

103,720

Antigua and Barbuda

104.2

102,834

Guernsey

152.9

102,548

Andorra

131.9

102,032

Djibouti

9.2

92,097

Bermuda

143.4

89,029

Vanuatu

27.9

87,583

Saint Lucia

47.4

87,446

Gibraltar

257.3

86,700

Tonga

75.0

80,062

Greenland

135.4

77,006

Faroe Islands

156.0

76,516

Grenada

57.8

65,362

Turks and Caicos Islands

138.7

54,417

Kiribati

42.4

51,428

Dominica

70.7

50,991

Monaco

126.5

49,980

Saint Kitts and Nevis

93.0

49,817

Liechtenstein

126.1

48,245

San Marino

139.1

47,302

St Vincent and the Grenadines

34.3

38,137

British Virgin Islands

108.7

33,075

Cook Islands

133.7

23,489

Anguilla

123.7

18,705

Nauru

136.7

14,863

Tuvalu

91.1

10,861

Saint Helena

129.5

7,892

Falkland Islands

124.9

4,407

Montserrat

58.4

2,911

Niue

145.7

2,352

Tokelau

141.5

1,936

Burundi

0

287

Pitcairn

200.0

94

British Indian Ocean Territory

0

0

Eritrea

0

0

North Korea

0

0

South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands

0

0

Vatican

0

0

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The UK has pledged to donate more than 100 million doses over the next year, while the US has pledged 500 million doses.

In total, the G7 group of nations promised to donate more than 870 million doses at a summit in the UK in June.

The vaccines will mainly be delivered through the Covax vaccine scheme, which aims to reach the most vulnerable 20% of every nation around the world.

Meanwhile, the president of Indonesia, where around 30% of the population are fully vaccinated, has also urged richer countries to share their doses.

"Everyone has helped, but in my opinion it's not enough," Joko Widodo told the BBC.

"In this time of crisis, advanced countries need to do more in helping poor countries get vaccines, so that we can overcome this pandemic together."