Only 14% of promised Covid vaccine doses reach poorest nations

Only one in seven Covid vaccine doses promised to the world’s poorest countries have been delivered, a report reveals.

Of 1.8bn doses pledged by wealthy nations, just 261m (14%) have arrived in low-income countries, according to the analysis by the People’s Vaccinealliance, a coalition of groups that includes Oxfam, ActionAid and Amnesty International.

Nearly a year after vaccines first became available, only 1.3% of people living in the poorest parts of the world are fully vaccinated.

The UK vowed to send poorer nations 100m doses but has so far delivered 9.6m, fewer than 10%, the report says. Canada has delivered 3.2m (8%) of the 40m doses it pledged. The US has delivered the most doses – nearly 177m. However, this is still less than a fifth (16%) of the 1.1bn jabs promised.

Meanwhile, of 994m doses promised to Covax, a global vaccine distribution system, by Johnson & Johnson, Moderna, Oxford/AstraZeneca, and Pfizer/BioNTech, only 120m (12%) have so far been delivered, according to the report.


Robbie Silverman, of Oxfam, said the figures exposed “the failure of rich country donations and the failure of Covax”. He added: “The only way to end the pandemic is to share the technology, and knowhow with other qualified manufacturers so that everyone, everywhere can have access to these lifesaving vaccines.”

The World Health Organization has publicly warned that it must be a global priority to deliver doses to developing countries before the end of this year. However, the report says wealthy nations are instead only working to a timetable of delivering more doses at some point in 2022. That delay, the report warns, will lead to unnecessary deaths.

Maaza Seyoum, of the African Alliance and People’s Vaccine Alliance Africa, said: “Across the world health workers are dying and children are losing parents and grandparents. With 99% of people in low-income countries still not vaccinated, we have had enough of these too little too late gestures.”

This week campaigners protested in Whitehall against the UK’s blocking of a waiver for the patent of the Covid vaccine.


India and South Africa have proposed that the World Trade Organization (WTO) suspend its enforcement of patents for coronavirus vaccines and treatments so that the inoculation could reach poorer countries.

The call has been backed by more than 100 nations, human rights groups including Doctors Without Borders, Human Rights Watch and Oxfam, and prominent figures such as Gordon Brown, the UK’s former prime minister. They say nobody is safe from coronavirus until everybody is safe.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have also backed a separate but related campaign calling on G7 countries and the European Union to share at least 1bn Covid vaccine doses with those most in need and support calls for a waiver on vaccine intellectual property rights.

But the UK, EU and Switzerland have opposed the move.

Tim Bierley, of Global Justice Now, said the UK and others had “obstructed efforts to scale up the world’s vaccine supply, forcing the global south to rely on donations that are always too little and too late”.

A UK government spokesperson said: “The UK is proud to be playing a leading role in the global effort to create and distribute Covid-19 vaccines.

“The UK wants to push ahead with pragmatic action, including voluntary licensing and technology transfer agreements for vaccines, support for Covax, and solutions for production bottlenecks and supply chain issues.”