STATEMENT OF THE CHAIPERSON OF THE SOUTH CENTRE BOARD, THABO MBEKI: COUNCIL OF MEMBER STATES, 24 FEBRUARY 2022
Once again the health, economic and social crisis caused by COVID-19 forces us to hold this meeting virtually. The deterioration of the situation in developing countries, to which I alluded two years ago, has only worsened. The gap between the countries of the North and the global South has widened. The lack of solidarity and selfishness of the countries of the North has led to the inequality in access to vaccines that we all know today.
If COVID-19 has taught us anything, it is that we must completely rethink the value we place on the health sector. The billions needed to prevent and respond to health crises are nothing compared to the billions lost in business closures, job losses and economic paralysis that are the cost to the global economy of a health emergency like the COVID-19 pandemic.
The South Centre, in this second year of the pandemic, has continued to adapt and innovate in its ways to support and accompany developing countries in this challenging context.