Fund-raising Vaccine telethon

Fund-raising Vaccine telethon

In early May, the European Union took the lead in combating the COVID-19 pandemic by organising a global telethon to fund research and development for the production of a vaccine. EUR 7.4 billion was raised as a result and a second round of fund raising was on 27 June.

On 23 June 2020, Romanian Member of the European Parliament (MEP), Tudor Ciuhodaru of the Group of the Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats, posed a written parliamentary question to the European Commission.

MEP Ciuhodaru asked the Commission “can it give details regarding allocation of the amounts raised, the beneficiaries and the eligibility criteria?”

On 25 November, Health and Food Safety Commissioner Stella Kyriakides responded on behalf of the European Commission.

Commissioner Kyriakides reported that “The Coronavirus Global Response, which started as a summit co-hosted by the Commission on 4 May 2020 and culminated in a closing conference organised by Global Citizens, raised a total of EUR 15.9 billion. EUR 2.3 billion were allocated to vaccines, EUR 615 million to therapeutics, EUR 315 million to diagnostics, EUR 703 million to strengthening fragile health systems and EUR 11.34 billion were allocated to COVID-19 national responses and research” and “the remaining funds have not been allocated yet”.

Commissioner Kyriakides further stated that “the main recipients are the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) (EUR 1.2 billion), GAVI, the Vaccine Alliance (EUR 513 million), the World Health Organisation (WHO) (EUR 702 million), the Global Fund (EUR 76 million), the Foundation for Innovative New Diagnostics (EUR 60 million), and the Therapeutics Accelerator (EUR 260 million)” and “the remaining amounts are either non-earmarked pledges or pledges to be allocated”.

The Commissioner highlighted that “the Commission and the European Investment Bank pledged EUR 4.9 billion” and that “the Commission has pledged 1.4 billion, EUR 1 billion of which come from Horizon 2020, EUR 150 million from the Emergency Support Instrument, EUR 80 million from rescEU and EUR 170 million from external instruments”.

She also added that “EUR 100 million will be donated to CEPI, EUR 158 million are dedicated to WHO deployment outside of the EU and EUR 12 million to health budget support” and “the funding coming from Horizon 2020 is already mobilised to support coronavirus-related research and innovation”.

Finally, Commissioner Stella Kyriakides declared that “all countries and entities were invited to pledge resources taking the form of new, committed, allocated or spent cash contributions, guarantees for investments, indirect grants and relevant funds announced as of 30 January 2020”.

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