In UN talk, Imran calls for vaccines for everyone

In UN talk, Imran calls for vaccines for everyone


ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan has expressed hope that whenever the coronavirus vaccine is available, it must be offered to everyone as he proposed a ten-point agenda to the world community to avert economic collapse in developing countries due to Covid-19, state media reported.

Addressing a special session of the UN General Assembly on Friday, the Prime Minister called for debt suspension till the end of the pandemic for low income and most stressed countries; cancellation of debt for the least developed countries; restructuring of the public sector debt of developing countries and a general allocation of special drawing rights of $500 billion.

Prime Minister Khan also proposed concessional financing to lower income countries through multilateral development banks; provision of loans at lower costs; fulfilment of the 0.7 per cent official development assistance commitments; mobilising the required $1.5 trillion annual investment in sustainable infrastructure; mobilising $100 billion per year for climate action in developing countries and halting of illicit financial outflows from developing to rich countries.

Khan stressed for a collective response to recover from the Covid crisis and achieve sustainable development goals. Alluding to the effects of the pandemic, the Prime Minister said the Covid-19 pandemic has infected nearly 65 million people and killed sadly about 1.5 million.

He expressed hope that whenever the vaccine is available, it must be offered to everyone. He said the pandemic has caused immense human suffering and the deepest global economic contraction since the great depression of the 1930s.

He said: “In Pakistan we had a successful policy of smart lockdowns to control the pandemic. Our efforts were aimed at ensuring that not only do we save people from the virus, but also prevent them from dying from hunger.

“We provided a relief package of around $8 billion to support the poor and to keep the economy afloat at the same time.”

He added: “So far, our strategy has worked, but now we are confronted with a far more aggressive second wave of the virus. We are facing now the challenge of maintaining and reviving our economic growth as well as dealing with increasing number of cases which are occupying our hospital beds.”

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