Today, Prime Minister Boris Johnson co-hosted a major international conference to drive forward the global race for coronavirus vaccines, treatments and tests – and called on other countries to step up their efforts and work together on the ‘most urgent shared endeavour of our lifetimes’.
The Prime Minister’s call to action came during the virtual Coronavirus Global Response International Pledging Conference, which is co-hosted by the UK and eight other countries and organisations.
He confirmed the UK’s pledge of £388m in UK aid funding for research into vaccines, tests and treatments – part of a larger £744m existing UK aid commitment to help end the pandemic and support the global economy.
This includes £250m for the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) to develop vaccines against coronavirus – the biggest such donation to the fund by any country.
Speaking to the conference, the Prime Minister said: “To win this battle, we must work together to build an impregnable shield around all our people, and that can only be achieved by developing and mass producing a vaccine.
“The more we pull together and share our expertise, the faster our scientists will succeed. The race to discover the vaccine to defeat this virus is not a competition between countries, but the most urgent shared endeavour of our lifetimes.
“It’s humanity against the virus – we are in this together, and together we will prevail.”