Vaccine owners are exclusively private

Pharmaceutical group research has been funded by billions of public money coming from taxpayers. In addition, states bought huge quantities of vaccines in advance – before they were both approved and produced. In that way, the pharmaceutical groups did not take the slightest financial risk.

When the vaccines were found, their owners became exclusively private pharmaceutical groups. They protected patents for vaccines as their intellectual property. Thus, they acquired the right to appropriate the profit from their sale for the next 20 years.

Source: Danas, 22.01.2021.

Partnership – for citizens to pay twice for the vaccine

For example, J&J received $ 450 million from the United States and then $ 1 billion for 100 million doses of vaccine. Pfizer-Bayontek received $ 2.5 billion to fund clinical trials and $ 100 million in pre-purchased doses.

More than 80 percent of the price of one dose of Pfizer vaccine represents a net profit for the manufacturer. In the first quarter of this year, Pfizer’s profit was $ 3.5 billion, and in the second quarter – $ 5.5 billion.

The EU has invested more than two billion euros (in laboratory research by vaccine manufacturers) (Pfizer Bayontek, Astra Zeneca, Moderna, J&J kroz) through orders signed before market licensing and vaccine production. .

Canada, Israel, and the United Kingdom have also signed contracts and invested in pharmaceutical groups.

The fact that states have invested billions of taxpayers’ money was not taken into account at all when protecting patents. There was no question of citizens’ participation in profit sharing, which would be proportional to their participation in investments.

A system is in force according to which citizens pay for the vaccine at least twice. For the first time – by financing subsidies to pharmaceutical research and production groups from their money. The second time – when health insurance buys vaccines that are financed – by the same citizens.

This is, in a nutshell, the outcome of last year’s private-public partnership of pharmaceutical groups and countries to find a vaccine against kovid as soon as possible19.

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Risk-free profit, Sanofi case

It is obvious that large pharmaceutical groups deal exclusively with the health of their shareholders and that, above all, they approach a private-public partnership with that goal in mind.

For example, pharmaceutical groups that received state money to work on finding the vaccine did not have to return it even though they would publicly declare giving up research. This was the case of the Sanofi group, which is considered French because of its headquarters, but is actually a multinational corporation. In the midst of the pandemic at the end of April 2020, Sanofi distributed dividends in the amount of almost 4 billion euros to its shareholders, which is a record amount since this pharmaceutical group was created. This provoked a protest from the unions of employees in this pharmaceutical group, who believed that the money should have been invested in research into vaccines and drugs against the corona virus.

On June 16, 2020, President Macron visited the headquarters of Sanofi and triumphantly announced that it would invest 610 million euros in a new factory for the production of vaccines. And not only that – he stated then that Sanofi would return the production of some drugs from abroad to France. On that occasion, he gave 200 million euros of state money to this pharmaceutical group in order to finance the infrastructure.

Only a few days later, on June 26, the Sanofi group announced a big austerity plan, which – as it turned out – was made in December of the previous year. Sanofi’s management then closed the department for research into diabetes and cardiovascular diseases and 1,700 jobs in plants in Europe, of which one thousand in France.

The French state continues to exempt Sanofi from taxes in the amount of around 150 million euros a year due to research activities. In addition, Sanofi received state subsidies for scientific research.

The principle of pharmaceutical and other industrial corporations has become: Zero risk, guaranteed profit for shareholders. When entering into a private-public partnership – one enters in such a way that through public or secret clauses of the contract, either explicitly or indirectly, the corporation is insured against the loss of money. The loss is always paid with public money, and if there is a gain – it belongs exclusively to the private participant in the partnership.

An interesting detail in this illustrative story of the Sanofi group is the fact that Serge Weinberg, Chairman of the Board of Sanofi, is a personal friend of President Macron. Weinberg, as his protégé, recommended him in 2008 for employment at the Rothschild Bank. Macron was not even thirty at the time and earned his “first million” in Rothschild.

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Monica Gandhi, an infectologist at the University of California at San Francisco, posted a table on her Twitter profile showing the results of clinical trials of the six most famous covid-19 vaccines – Moderna, Pfizer, AstraZeneca, Johnson & Johnson, NovaVaks and Russia’s Sputnik V. Feb 2021)

Corporations are stronger than states

This “detail” is actually typical of the functioning of the neoliberal system and the way in which large-scale industry came to a position of power in relation to states. Namely, in the biographies of members of the European Commission, the governments of European countries, as well as advisors in the governing state administrations, often write that they spent some time in large corporations from where they were transferred to a state apart, and then returned to corporations, usually to a more important place.

That pharmaceutical corporations are stronger than states and impose their interest as a priority is also confirmed by the abandonment of the Covax solidarity mechanism from the initial goal of delivering vaccines to poor countries. Africa alone will lack half a billion vaccines, and the goal of vaccinating 40% of the world’s population will not be achieved – the World Health Organization announced.

Covax is a mechanism whose role is to supply poor countries with vaccines. Kovaks is essentially a private-public partnership that leaves pharmaceutical companies the right to fully control production, prices and the destination to which vaccines will be sent. No wonder Kovaks did not keep his promises from the beginning of the epidemic.

Due to the existence of patents for vaccines, the poorest countries depend on the good will and solidarity of the richest who have provided their population. So far, about 49 million doses have arrived in the poorest countries, while Kovax’s goal is to distribute 1.8 billion vaccines in 92 countries by the end of the year.

Poor countries could more easily get vaccines if they became a public good. Motivated solely by the pursuit of profit and the promises made to their shareholders, pharmaceutical groups oppose this initiative.

“Market opportunities” for price increases

Not only is declaring vaccines a public good out of the question, but Pfizer and other vaccine manufacturers are no longer reluctant to raise prices – under the laws of the market as for any commodity. This is confirmed by Feiser’s negotiations with the European Commission, the details of which citizens do not have the right to know, even though orders are paid for with their money.

The mechanism on which the health and survival of billions of people depends is best illustrated by a reputable American independent portal The Intercept . He said in mid-March that they were Johnson&Johnson, Modern i Pfizer discreetly announced the price increase because they promised it to their shareholders.

The portal reported that the financial directors of the Pfizer laboratory spoke at a conference organized by large banks, such as Barklays, for example.

On that occasion, they explained to investors that the infection would become endemic. This would mean that, unlike the pandemic, which is general and planetary, the endemic infection with kovid 19 will exist in limited areas, but that it will be “installed” in the long run. We will have to live with it and get vaccinated against it regularly due to the appearance of new variants of the virus. This prediction, as we have seen, has come true.

Frank D’Amelio, CFO and vice president of Pfizer, emphasized that it was obvious that the prices so far did not determine “normal market circumstances”, which he called “normal market forces”. “The needs of governments to be supplied with vaccines were the ones that dictated the prices. We believe that normal market power will be restored. “Factors, such as efficiency and capacity to strengthen immunity, will become even more important, and we see a great opportunity in that when it comes to increasing the demand for our vaccine and when it comes to our prices,” D’Amelio said at the time.

The most profitable product – the vaccine against kovid 19

In translation, additional (re) vaccinations – primarily due to immunization against new variants – open the prospect of colossal earnings in the period after the end of the pandemic. It is obvious that covid vaccines could become the most profitable drugs in the world.

Several initiatives have been launched in the World Health Organization (which is part of the UN) to mitigate the application of the “intellectual property rights” principle in the case of the coronavirus vaccine.

Theoretically, some countries could activate the determinant from the World Trade Organization agreement, which gives states the possibility of not respecting the rules on intellectual property in an “extremely urgent situation”.

Experts in international law, however, warn that in the past, developing countries that have activated this determinant have mostly come under pressure from patent-holding countries, especially the United States.


Source: Balkan Magazin – Aktuelnosti by www.balkanmagazin.net.

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