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Vaccines, Draghi: “They are a global common good, we must break down obstacles”

“Vaccines are a global commons. It is a priority to increase their production, guaranteeing its safety, and breaking down the obstacles that limit vaccination campaigns ”. This was said by Prime Minister Mario Draghi, in the aftermath of the turning point announced by US President Joe Biden, who declared that he was in favor of the suspension of patents on anti-Covid vaccines.

Health Minister Roberto Speranza also expressed himself favorably on the issue: “Biden's breakthrough on free access for all to vaccine patents is an important step forward. Europe must also play a part of him. This pandemic has taught us that we can only win together, ” the minister wrote in a Facebook post.

“The announcement by the Biden administration, in favor of the suspension of patents, is a very important signal,” Foreign Minister Luigi Di Maio wrote on Facebook. “Italy is there, Europe does not miss this opportunity and shows that it is united and courageous. We need free access to patents on anti-Covid vaccines — continues Di Maio -. It is a race against time and everyone's collaboration is needed to avoid being overwhelmed by the variants of the virus. Every state must have the same opportunities and it is essential, in the face of this emergency, to liberalize production ”.


The EU leaders have already made it known that the waiver will be discussed at the informal summit of leaders in Porto over the weekend. “The European Parliament is ready to discuss any proposal that will help speed up the vaccination process globally,” European Parliament President David Sassoli wrote on Twitter. “In these exceptional times, we need to make sure patents and licenses work to protect everyone's interests,” he points out.

“The EU is ready to discuss any proposal that addresses the Covid crisis” in an effective and pragmatic way. This is why we are ready to discuss how the US proposal for an intellectual property “patent waiver” for Covid vaccines could help achieve that goal, “said European Commission President Ursula. Von der Leyen, in his speech on the state of the Union.

Other European leaders have also spoken in favor of the patent exemption. In France, President Emmanuel Macron said he was “completely in favor” of the revocation of patents on vaccines. “Yup. We must obviously make this vaccine a world public good ”, added Macron, underlining at the same time that the priority, in the short term, is“ the donation of doses ” as well as“ producing in partnership with the poorest countries ”. German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas said Germany was “open” to discussion on the issue.

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