Letter | Date: 19/11/2020 | Office of the Prime Minister
Joint letter from President of the Republic of South Africa Matamela, Mr Cyril Ramaphosa, Prime Minister of Norway, Ms Erna Solberg, Director-General of the World Health Organization, Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus and President of the European Commission, Dr Ursula von der Leyen.
The G20 leaders recognized the exceptional gravity of the Covid-19 pandemic already when they met in March this year. The world continues to need the G20 to take the bold action needed to bring an end to the global Covid-19 pandemic and its devastating impact. Covid-19 does not respect national boundaries. As long as it exists anywhere, it is a threat everywhere.
The lack of an adequately financed global exit strategy is an existential threat to the economic and health security of all countries and their citizens. Only by tackling the pandemic globally, will economic vitality be restored and a catastrophe be averted.
We write, as champions of the Access to COVID-19 Tools (ACT) Accelerator. The ACT-Accelerator is the only comprehensive approach that can address the root causes of the Covid-19 crisis globally and accelerate the end of the pandemic. We call on G20 countries to consider support to the global Covid-19 response as part of their domestic stimulus spending and to contribute substantial amounts, to fully fund the ACT-Accelerator.
Since April, the ACT-Accelerator partnership has supported the fastest, most coordinated and successful global effort in history to develop tools to fight a disease. With significant advances in research and development by academia, private sector and government initiatives, the ACT-Accelerator is on the cusp of securing a way to end the acute phase of the pandemic.
A commitment by G20 leaders at the G20 Summit in Riyadh to invest substantially in the ACT-Accelerator’s immediate funding gap of US$4.5 billion will immediately save lives, lay the groundwork for mass procurement and delivery of Covid-19 tools around the world, and provide an exit strategy out of this global economic and human crisis.
With this funding, and a joint commitment to spend a proportion of future stimulus on the Covid-19 tools needed globally, the G20 will build a foundation to end the pandemic. This year’s G20 Summit takes place during the most serious global crisis in memory and could mark one of the most important moments in multilateral cooperation.
We need the G20 to continue to lead, not only in securing the necessary resources to end the Covid-19 pandemic, but also in addressing the crisis from a strategic macroeconomic perspective that transcends national and sectoral interests and demonstrates joint global action.
Please accept, Your Excellency, the assurance of our highest consideration.
Mr Matamela Cyril Ramaphosa
Ms Erna Solberg
Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus
Dr Ursula von der Leyen