Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the whole world has followed and waited for every speech of tech billionaire Bill Gates. There are two fundamental reasons behind it: he managed to forecast the appearance of a global epidemic and he has just poured millions of dollars to end up it.

Bill Gates Coronavirus

According to a recent speech, Bill Gates said that he and the Gates Foundation has planned to invest $150M so that the poorest people in the world can afford the COVID-19 vaccine.

It is one of the largest financial commitments of the second-richest billionaire since the COVID-19 pandemic has taken place.

Accordingly, the Gates Foundation has transferred the huge amount to Serum Institute of India so that this largest biotechnology company in the world can produce 10 crores of the COVID-19 vaccine doses for only $3 each (about Rs224.44). With Bill Gates’s support, poor people will soon be able to buy the vaccine at the price 10 times as low as that of Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine - it is now sold at $37 (Rs2,768.33) each dose.

“Make Sure We Can End It Not Just In The Rich Countries”

For two decades, Bill Gates has always been the target of anti-vaxxers due to his participation in anti-vaccine movements. He is one of the top world leaders to motivate the universality of vaccines across the world.

Covid 19 Vaccine

The Gates Foundation has spent up to $4B on an initiative called Gavi in a bid to develop a global vaccine network. For 20 years, Gavi has vaccinated 75 crore children and saved 1.3 crores amongst them.

At the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, billionaire Bill Gates talked a lot about vaccines. He even wanted to funnel billions of USD to establish 07 factories for the most potential vaccine producers.

Apart from motivating the vaccine production faster, he has also expressed his concerns about whether the new kind of vaccine can reach poor people, as well as whether its price can become a barrier against poo people or not.

In an interview with Bloomberg, Bill Gates said that his team has made a great effort to ensure that the pandemic can end “not just in the rich countries.” He also emphasized that he has focused on affordable vaccines that can be distributed in developing countries.

It is also the orientation that some pharmaceutical companies such as AstraZeneca and Novavax have followed. Affordable vaccines are now an issue we need to tackle in a bid to end up the COVID-19 pandemic across the world.

What Bill Gates has done is basically pouring his money into an effort to establish a price for vaccines produced by AstraZeneca and Novavax. Also, the Gates Foundation has made a commitment to supporting the total amount of $500M to the world amid the epidemic. A large number of this amount is used to conduct research and produce vaccines. The additional $150M is an interest-free and non-refundable loan.

10 Crore COVID-19 Vaccine Doses Are Sold At $3 Each

At present, there have been about 200 kinds of vaccines under development and 28 amongst them have been tested clinically. At least 5 vaccines have been in the last trial period before they are applied for commercialization.

Although vaccine producers commit to keeping the profit margin at low price amid the pandemic, some of the top candidates such as those of Pfizer and Moderna are priced quite high. It is because they are produced based on advanced technologies with huge production costs.

Covid 19

For example, Moderna’s RNA-based vaccine is planned to sell at $37 (Rs2,768.33) each dose. Meanwhile, Pfizer’s vaccine is sold at $19.5 (Rs1,458.75) per dose.

In an interview with WIRED, Bill Gates said that such vaccines are likely to only help rich countries fight against the pandemic. They are not a low-cost solution and can’t reach the whole world.

That’s why Bill Gates chooses the Serum Institute and helps this Indian vaccine company to tackle its issue. He aims to motivate Serum Institute’s research projects so that they can produce the most powerful vaccine at the lowest price, only $3.

Additionally, Bill Gates has teamed up with many other vaccine researchers including Johnson & Johnson to make sure that they follow the development of low-cost vaccines for developing countries and poor people with low income.

With its global vaccine network Gavi, the Gates Foundation has also committed $100M to help poor countries buy the COVID-19 vaccine. Back in June, the US billionaire promised to invest an additional $1.6B on Gavi over the next 5 years to pursue its mission.