While Mr. Biden announced he would make good on an American promise to donate $4 billion to the campaign to expedite the manufacturing and distribution of coronavirus vaccines around the world — a move approved last year by a Democratic-led House and a Republican led-Senate — there were clear differences in approach during the meeting.
Underscoring the importance that the European Union accords to Africa, Mr. Macron called on Western nations to supply 13 million vaccine doses to African governments “as soon as possible” to protect health workers.
He warned that if the alliance failed to do this, “our African friends will be pressured by their populations, and rightly so, to buy doses from the Chinese, the Russians or directly from laboratories.”
Vaccine donations would reflect “a common will to advance and share the same values,” Mr. Macron said. Otherwise, “the power of the West, of Europeans and Americans, will be only a concept, and not a reality.”
Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the director general of the World Health Organization, on Friday also urged countries and drugmakers to help speed up the manufacturing and distribution of vaccines across the globe, warning that the world could be “back at Square 1” if some countries went ahead with their vaccination campaigns and left others behind.
“Vaccine equity is not just the right thing to do, it’s also the smartest to do,” Dr. Tedros said to the Munich conference. He argued that the longer it would take to vaccinate populations in every country, the longer the pandemic would remain out of control.
Melissa Eddy, Elian Peltier and Mark Landler contributed reporting.