"Indecent amounts": human rights activists accuse vaccine manufacturers of speculation

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"Indecent amounts": human rights activists accuse vaccine manufacturers of speculation
"Indecent amounts": human rights activists accuse vaccine manufacturers of speculation
19 May, 16:45In the worldPhoto: Reuters
Moderna, Pfizer, BioNTech and AstraZeneca are the fastest growing pharmaceutical companies in the world. According to human rights organizations, the greed of big-pharma led to the fact that global vaccination was never carried out, and this threatens to mutate the virus and create more deadly strains.

Manufacturers of the most popular anti-virus vaccines have come under fire from human rights groups after releasing their first-quarter 2022 earnings, according to the Daily Mail. The figures show that these companies are the fastest growing pharmaceutical companies in the world. The leader in terms of growth rates is Moderna, whose revenue for the year grew by 221% to $6.1 billion. It is followed by BioNTech (200%, $6.4 billion), Pfizer (77%, $25.7 billion) and AstraZeneca (56%, $11.4 billion).

According to statistics, about six out of ten people in the world have already received two vaccinations, and the supply of vaccines is quite large. Part of the drugs are thrown into the landfill due to the expiration date, because a significant part of the population of developing countries does not see a serious threat in the virus and refuses to be vaccinated, and rich countries such as the USA, Great Britain and Germany have an overabundance of vaccines. Nevertheless, manufacturers are confident that active vaccination in the world will resume in the fall, as the coronavirus becomes endemic. This will lead to a new increase in the income of pharmaceutical companies. So, Pfizer and Moderna reported that they intend to earn $ 51 billion from covid vaccines this year, Moderna predicts to receive $ 19 billion.

The statistic has angered human rights and philanthropic groups, who accuse drug companies of "shameless profiteering from the pandemic" that has allowed several manufacturers to make "obscene sums of money". Representatives of the People's Vaccine Alliance, an organization calling for equal access to anti-virus vaccines, say: “At the height of the crisis, they were selling salvation to the highest bidder, while the rest were left to die. They also hid their technology under intellectual property rights and refused to share it.”

The US is known to have bought Pfizer vaccines at the start of the pandemic at $19.50 per dose. Israel admitted that it paid $23.50 each for the right to receive the first doses produced and to start vaccinations before anyone else. And EU countries managed to get vaccines at a price of $15.50.

"It's been two years since the start of the pandemic and a year since vaccines became available, yet a few corporations are still taking advantage of their advantage to make obscene amounts of money," says a spokesman for another anti-poverty charity, Oxfam. “We have allowed pharmaceutical companies to have monopoly control over vital technologies that everyone needs: they determine the number of doses produced, the buyers, the price. They care about personal gain, not health care: they sell the vast majority of their medicines to rich countries, leaving the poor with scraps from the table. Meanwhile, the failure to achieve global vaccination not only leads to new suffering, but also allows new strains to arise and spread, endangering each of us.”

Revenue reports for January-March 2021 and 2022, released by the 23 largest pharmaceutical giants, showed that only two of them, Viatris and Biogen, saw revenues fall during this period. Pfizer and Johnson & Johnson have the largest revenues, with $23.4 billion each. They are followed by Roche, which has developed antibodies to treat covid, among others, and Merck, behind the antiviral drug molnupiravir, at $15.9 billion.

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