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U.S. pledges to buy 500 million more doses to donate to rest of world as pressure mounts Updated: 2021-09-23 19:04:39 KST

Under increasing pressure to share its load of COVID-19 vaccines, the United States has pledged to buy 500 million more doses to donate to countries in need.

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"This is another half billion doses that will all be shipped by this time next year."

At a four-hour virtual COVID-19 summit hosted by the White House on Wednesday, President Joe Biden said the U.S. will become the world's (quote) "arsenal of vaccines" and encouraged other high income countries to deliver on their own promises.

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"That's why today we're launching the EU-US Vaccine Partnership to work more closely together and with our partners in expanding global vaccinations."

South Korean president Moon Jae-in in his pre-recorded speech promised to expand its support by cooperating with the United Nations and the World Health Organization while taking on a leading role in helping establish an inclusive, public health security system around the world.

"We will persistently expand our official development assistance and do our best to enhance the overall public health capacities of developing nations."
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World governments, aid groups and health organizations have grown more and more vocal about the slow pace of vaccinations and differing levels of access to shots between wealthier and poorer countries.
AP reports there are vast disparities in distribution although over 5.9 billion COVID-19 doses have been administered worldwide over the past year, representing about 43 percent of the global population.
Han Seong-woo, Arirang News.
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