Multilateralism has failed to rise to occasion: MEA Secretary
Even as people in developing countries risk succumbing to the pandemic, some countries are finding reasons for not sharing the vaccines
India on Friday deplored that multilateralism has failed to rise to the occasion in handling the pandemic or its impact.
“Multilateralism, which had already been under pressure for not being able to represent the current realities of our times, again failed to rise to the occasion in handling the pandemic or its impact,” MEA Secretary (CPV & OIA) said in his inaugural address at BRICS Civil Forum 2021
He said while efforts have been made towards equitable vaccine distribution by the Covax facility, it has not been able to prevent the vaccine nationalism.
“While people in developing countries risk succumbing to the pandemic, some countries are finding reasons for not sharing the vaccines or their Intellectual Property Rights, so as to maximize their profits from vaccines, diagnostics, and therapeutics for the pandemic,” the MEA Secretary said.
“India and South Africa repeatedly made submissions to WTO to provide waivers to TRIPS for supply of Covid vaccines to the global community. These appeals did not go through, despite wide support from developing countries. Science provided vaccines, humanity prevented its distribution,” he added.
“The multilateral system, aimed at promoting development and maintaining security, did yeoman service in the early years after WWII. But over time, its inability to reform and adjust to evolving developments, exposed its fault lines, both on scope and efficacy of its decisions and delivery and also on its representative nature,” the MEA Secretary said.
“Together we have the responsibility to reshape our global institutions and how we look to the future. Those resisting reforms are clinging to an image of the past that is not the reality of the present and certainly not the hope of the future,” he said.
“Recent developments demonstrate that multilateralism is not just relevant but also the need of the hour. It is the basis for any long term solution to the challenges faced by the global community, current or future, solutions that benefit all. Multilateralism is a form of global governance based on common rules accepted by multiple stakeholders for our common good,” he added.