Photo: Advocates in Mexico City protest to Vaccinate Our World in front of a Pfizer facility.
Pfizer has reported it sold $7.8 billion in vaccines in quarter two of 2021 – while vaccine access remains woefully unequal between wealthy and low- and middle-income countries. AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) calls on Pfizer and other vaccine manufacturers that continue profiting from a global public health disaster to stop lining CEO pockets and give the vaccines back to the people to expedite the end of the pandemic.
In addition to the second quarter figures that exceeded Wall Street’s expectations on earnings and revenue, Pfizer expects to see $33.5 billion in vaccine sales this year, up from its original forecast of $26 billion, according to CNBC.
“These drug companies, with Pfizer among the worst, continue to prove that there is no end to how low they’ll stoop to profit from the illness and death that threaten billions of people worldwide,” said AHF Chief of Global Advocacy and Policy Terri Ford. “Taxpayers are the primary funders of vaccine research and development – not pharma companies. And it’s abhorrent that the Pfizer CEO is getting millions of dollars in bonuses when 98% and 83% of the populations in Africa and Asia, respectively, have yet to receive a single dose. The world is at war with COVID-19, and Pfizer is cashing in on the devastation.”
For COVID-19 vaccine sales alone, Pfizer expects to see a nearly 30% profit this year due in large part to sales to wealthy nations that secured enough doses to inoculate their populations multiple times over. All while initiatives like COVAX, which was supposed to supply lower-income countries with vaccines, has only managed to vaccinate 3% of people in nations under its charter. The World Health Organization has suggested that vaccinating at least 70% of the population will be required to end the pandemic.
“Big pharma is proving once again that it will never willfully put lives before profits,” added Ford. “This is sadly just another glaring example of why G20 leaders must boost international cooperation and support patent waivers and technology transfers to developing countries for COVID-19 vaccines. We can’t rid the world of the pandemic until all countries have access to lifesaving vaccines, not just the wealthiest nations. That can’t happen until production and distribution of affordable vaccines is greatly increased. The G20 must make it happen.”
AHF has recently launched a G20 Manifesto and a live count down to the G20 summit in Rome, Italy, this October. The Manifesto outlines seven actions G20 leaders must take before the meeting to Vaccinate Our World and put the world on a path to defeating the pandemic.