Australia hesitant to support vaccine IP waiver
Australia has opposed a proposal made by India and South Africa and 115 other countries at a World Trade Organisation meeting on Friday, calling for the intellectual property rights of COVID-19 technologies to be lifted. As India and South America scramble to contain crippling COVID-19 outbreaks, a global shortage of COVID-19 vaccine supplies has seen many low to middle-income countries struggle to secure vaccine supplies and fall to the back of the queue. Despite efforts by the COVAX initiative, which has delivered 40 million doses to 100 countries, experts predict the majority of developing nations will not be vaccinated until 2023. As concerns grow over the potential for new mutations and strains of COVID-19 to resist the vaccine, health organisations and international aid groups are urging wealthy countries to agree to the waiver to see more Covid-19 vaccines produced and distributed quicker.