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EU summit in Porto: Merkel against the release of vaccine patents - clear forecast for summer vacation

2021-05-09T22:33:43.950Z

The EU heads of state and government met for an unofficial EU summit. Angela Merkel then clarified her position on patent protection. The news ticker.



The EU heads of state and government met for an unofficial EU summit.

Angela Merkel then clarified her position on patent protection.

The news ticker.

  • Since Friday (May 7th) the EU heads of state and government have been negotiating at the unofficial EU summit in Porto - the subject is EU social policy.

  • Chancellor Angela Merkel * then appeared in front of the press

    (see update from May 8, 3:40 p.m.)

    .

  • Discussions are being held, among other things, about the US proposal for the release of corona vaccination patents * (

    see update from May 8, 12.30 p.m.).

  • This news ticker is continuously updated.

Update from May 8, 3:40 p.m .:

Angela Merkel appeared in front of the press a little earlier after the EU summit. Among other things, she speaks about the talks on corona vaccinations and welcomes the EU contract with Biontech / Pfizer, which is already looking at additional vaccinations for the next few years. "We will of course need these funds and long-term production of vaccines and the support of innovation and science," said Merkel. In this context she also talks about patent protection. "I don't think that the question of patents is the solution to make vaccines available to more people," says Merkel. Instead, more creativity is needed, including patent protection. However, Germany will continue to take part in looking at how vaccine production can be further increased.

When asked by a journalist, Merkel mentioned the digital vaccination certificate.

"We still have some questions to clarify," says Merkel.

Like vaccines that have not yet been approved in the EU.

When asked about trips and activities in the summer, the Chancellor believes that we can “generally afford what was possible last summer”.

She is confident that the incidences will continue to move in the right direction.

At this point, however, she does not want to state an exact point in time when further easing will be possible.

“At that time we had incidences of 2 and 3 and 4,” says Merkel.

“Down with the incidences!

That means freedom for all people then.

And then we have the two helpers vaccinating and testing, so we should be better off. "

EU Summit: Main Objectives for 2030 - Actions to Support Young People

+

Ursula von der Leyen (M), President of the European Commission, and Charles Michel, President of the European Council, go to the Crystal Palace with other participants of the EU summit.

© Luis Vieira / dpa

Update from May 8, 1 p.m.:

At the unofficial summit on Saturday (May 8), the EU heads of state and government adopted a joint declaration on strengthening EU social policy against the background of the Corona crisis.

Among other things, this emphasizes the need to help young people whose career and training plans have been affected due to the corona pandemic.

Three main goals were set for 2030:

  • an employment rate of at least 78 percent

  • Training for at least 60 percent of adults each year

  • Reduce the number of people at risk of poverty or social exclusion by at least 15 million

The EU Commission is to evaluate progress annually and make recommendations on how to achieve the goals.

Education and skills should be placed at the center of political action.

This is necessary in order to be able to counter climate change and digitization in the long term.

The corona crisis is explicitly addressed in the declaration.

Young people were "hit very negatively" by this, which is why the EU wants to "primarily take measures to support young people".

Dispute with Poland and Hungary: term "gender equality" deleted from declaration

The EU member states had previously fought for a passage in the declaration in which the term “gender equality” appeared.

Poland and Hungary blocked the passage because of this term.

This will no longer appear in the version approved on Saturday (May 8th).

Update from May 8, 12.30 p.m.:

The US proposal for the release of patents announced by President Biden on Wednesday is not a quick solution to the global shortage of corona vaccines from the EU perspective.

However, the EU does not want to avoid a discussion about it.

"We do not think that this is a miracle solution in the short term," said EU Council President Charles Michel on Saturday after extensive consultations with the heads of state and government.

However, they are ready to discuss the issue as soon as the US government has a concrete proposal.

At the same time, international partners should be encouraged to facilitate the export of corona vaccines.

As the

German Press Agency

reported, many heads of state and government made this clear at their meeting in Porto.

Chancellor Angela Merkel opposed the patent release during the talks.

Merkel did not travel to Portugal because of the pandemic in Germany, but switched on at times via video.

Corona vaccination campaign in the EU: Distribution among the member states

EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen argued in Porto that the release of patents would not result in an additional dose of vaccine. It makes more sense to split up the vaccines produced and export them. At a dinner on Friday, according to information from EU circles, the distribution of the corona vaccines in Europe should also have been negotiated. This is now going well. Progress can also be noted with regard to the development of a digital vaccination certificate. The system is to be used from June and, above all, will make travel easier.

Update from May 8th, 12 noon:

The EU heads of state and government continued the unofficial EU summit in Porto, Portugal.

Talks on a declaration to strengthen the social dimension of the EU have continued since 10:30 a.m.

Even today, one of the goals of the EU governments is to commit to more investment in training and further education in view of the challenges posed by climate change and digitization.

EU summit in Porto: Negotiations with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi

A summit with India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi is planned for the afternoon. In addition to providing support in view of the country's critical situation in the corona pandemic, discussions are also about expanding economic relations. Negotiations on a free trade agreement are to be resumed after more than eight years. EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said on Saturday that she was looking forward to a "restart" of talks on a free trade agreement. 

Von der Leyen stressed that there was "a lot of untapped potential" between the EU and India.

This applies above all to trade and investment.

The head of the commission also emphasized that India was "a power center in digitization".

Both sides agreed to want to work together more closely on artificial intelligence and supercomputers.

First report from May 7th, 10.45 p.m

.: Porto - boost the economy, get jobs, alleviate poverty: At the social summit in Portugal, representatives of the EU countries, trade unions and employers joined forces to achieve a fair upswing after the corona crisis and a more social one Known in Europe.

In a declaration on Friday evening, they committed themselves to specific goals in order to noticeably improve the social situation by 2030.

The aim is to achieve an employment rate of at least 78 percent in the EU by the end of the decade.

At least 60 percent of adults should attend further training courses annually and the number of people at risk of poverty and social exclusion should be reduced by at least 15 million.


EU summit: Von der Leyen presents aid program - "bigger than the Marshall Plan"

Such a far-reaching agreement between the states and the social partners is unprecedented, said Portuguese Prime Minister Antonio Costa *.

He spoke of a "historic moment".

EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen emphasized that the recovery from the Corona crisis * and the digital and green change in the economy are now about creating good, future-proof jobs and the necessary qualifications.

The EUR 750 billion in EU development aid would support this, emphasized von der Leyen.

The program is "bigger than the Marshall Plan," but it must now be implemented quickly.

Von der Leyen appealed to all EU countries to ratify the necessary budget decision in May.

Then the Commission could start taking out the necessary loans on the financial markets in June.


EU summit: Poland and Hungary prevent word "gender equality"

The meeting did not go off without any dispute. Because Poland and Hungary prevented the word “gender equality” in the planned declaration of the EU social summit in Porto. Warsaw and Budapest had resisted the term because it “creates space for LGBT rights” and sees “the fabric of their Christian societies” in danger, said an EU diplomat on Friday. Hungary's Prime Minister Viktor Orban * criticized EU governments who wanted to refer to something other than equality between men and women.

The dispute, which concerned only one of 13 points in the declaration of the social summit, had occupied the EU ambassadors for days. In an original draft from the beginning of the week it was said that the EU wanted to "close the gap in employment, pay and pensions between men and women and promote gender equality and fairness for every individual in our society". In the final version, which is to be adopted on Saturday, it is now said that Europe wants to "close the gender gap in employment, pay and pensions and promote fairness for every individual in our society". Reference is also made to basic principle number two of the European Pillar for Social Rights adopted in 2017. Only "women and men" are mentioned there.This prevented a possible reference to the LGBT community. The English abbreviation LGBT stands for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender.

EU summit: Orban drives attack department - "They don't like the Christian approach"

Orban defended the blockade stance.

It is about an "ideologically motivated expression, the meaning of which is not clear," he said when he arrived at the summit in Porto.

If the term gender equality is used, it should refer to men and women.

But this is always rejected by other EU countries, said the Hungarian.

"They don't like the Christian approach." Warsaw insists on adhering to the provisions of the EU treaty, said a Polish representative of the AFP news agency about the dispute.

"The EU treaty clearly does not refer to gender equality, but to equality between women and men."

The EU meeting lasts until Saturday.

Incidentally, Porto should also be about the corona pandemic and, among other things, the question of whether vaccine patents should be released in order to advance global supply.

The EU states are divided on this.

EU summit: also focus on foreign and social policy

The heads of state and government also wanted to discuss foreign policy issues, including relations with Russia. A video conference with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi is also planned for Saturday. In addition, Chancellor Merkel will hold a press conference on Saturday at 4 p.m. She did not travel to Germany due to the pandemic and only switched on temporarily via video. The SPD European politician Katarina Barley criticized this and called on the EU states to do more for social cohesion. The left-wing European politician Özlem Demirel complained: "Social policy only plays a subordinate role in the EU, and that has to change."

Many EU states do not want Brussels to interfere with social policy. Concrete social policy EU plans such as requirements for the introduction of local minimum wages in all 27 countries are very controversial and hardly make any progress.

(dpa / AFP / cibo) * Merkur.de is an offer from IPPEN.MEDIA

Source: merkur

All news articles on 2021-05-09

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