- Monday "will mark a turning point in our fight against the coronavirus," Von der Leyen said.
- Anja Karliczek warned against exaggerating expectations about developing a new vaccine against the new Coronavirus in a short period.
- The emerging Coronavirus would continue to pose a major risk until a vaccine will be found.
Germany plans to allocate €525 million for international cooperation in developing vaccines and medicines for the emerging coronavirus. German Chancellor Angela Merkel made the announcement today during a “marathon” online donor conference, which was called by European Commission President Ursula Von der Leyen.
Monday “will mark a turning point in our fight against the coronavirus,” Von der Leyen said. “Because today, the world is coming together – governments from every continent will join hands and team up with global health organizations and other experienced partners. The partners are many, the goal is one: to defeat this virus.”
Merkel added in a brief speech that the pandemic represents a global challenge that can only be overcome through global cooperation, criticizing everyone’s lack of willingness for multilateral cooperation at this time. Merkel said, “We will contribute €525 million directly to this pledging conference and we will also continue our obligations for global health overall with around €1.3 billion.”
In turn, the European Commission pledged €1 billion for efforts to develop a vaccine, treatments, and tests for the Coronavirus. Announcing this amount, Commission President Von der Leyen said this was the effort of the “European Team,” noting that it included contributions from European Union member states.
“The size of our response measures must match the scale of the crisis,” said European Council President Charles Michel. “These are black days, but they are also days that reveal our humanity.”
A Special Program in Germany
Meanwhile, the German Minister of Scientific Research, Anja Karliczek, warned against exaggerating expectations about developing a new vaccine against the new Coronavirus in a short period. “We should not wait for a miracle,” she said during a conference call on Monday. The German Minister added that the vaccines are not expected to be reached before the middle of next year, at the earliest.
Karliczek announced a “special and wide-ranging program” for vaccine development and manufacture in Germany, explaining that the program is based on supporting pharmaceutical companies and research groups and expanding clinical trials for vaccines.
For example, Karliczek said it is possible that late-stage people from professions and groups at risk of infection, such as policemen, teachers, and medical personnel, will voluntarily participate in late clinical trials. Karliczek explained that this program is being worked on within the German government, expressing the hope that it will be launched soon.
“The Situation is Still Very Dangerous.”
Meanwhile, the World Health Organization’s top emergency expert, Mark Ryan, said on Sunday that parts of the world had begun to emerge from the COVID-19 pandemic and had begun to cautiously resume normalcy. However, the emerging Coronavirus would continue to pose a major risk until a vaccine will be found.
“I will be pleased if the matter succeeds in a few months,” Ryan said. However, he believed that realism should be demonstrated, “It may take years because there may be setbacks as well, and we have seen this in other vaccines.”