US downplays risk of sharing COVID-19 vaccines with Mexico

WASHINGTON / MEXICO CITY, March 1 (Reuters) – The Biden administration on Monday performed down the prospect of sharing coronavirus vaccines with Mexico, saying it was focusing first on defending its personal inhabitants from a pandemic that killed greater than 500,000 Individuals.

The remarks by White Home press secretary Jen Psaki got here earlier than a video convention between Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador and US President Joe Biden, throughout which the Mexican chief was to ask america to ” take into account sharing a part of its COVID-19 vaccine provide. .

“The administration’s focus is on ensuring each American is vaccinated. And as soon as we have achieved that objective, we’re comfortable to debate subsequent steps,” Psaki mentioned at a press convention within the White Home.

Biden informed reporters the 2 leaders would focus on the matter firstly of the assembly. However an official assertion launched after the assembly ended made no point out of the vaccine distribution.

Biden predicted that america may have sufficient provide by the tip of July to vaccinate all Individuals. U.S. authorities have administered 76.9 million doses up to now, in keeping with the U.S. Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention, sufficient for 23% of the inhabitants to obtain the 2 doses advisable for full safety underneath vaccines which have been deployed up to now.

Mexico has vaccinated round 2.5 million doses up to now, sufficient for about 1% of the inhabitants, in keeping with information compiled by Reuters. Officers have been pissed off with provide bottlenecks and have expressed considerations that wealthy international locations are hoarding vaccines.

Loprez Obrador informed a press convention forward of the assembly that he would ask Biden to share the vaccines he has. Mexico would reimburse Washington as soon as the drug firms ship their orders, in keeping with Reuters experiences.

In a joint assertion launched after the assembly, the 2 international locations mentioned they might deepen their cooperation on the response to COVID-19.

US President Joe Biden and Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas look up during a virtual bilateral meeting with Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez from the White House in Washington, United States, March 1, 2021. REUTERS / Kevin The brand

US President Joe Biden and Homeland Safety Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas search for throughout a digital bilateral assembly with Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez from the White Home in Washington, United States, March 1, 2021. REUTERS / Kevin The model

In addition they mentioned they might work collectively on immigration insurance policies “which acknowledge the dignity of migrants and the crucial of orderly, secure and common migration”.

Lopez Obrador is pushing for extra US work permits for Mexicans and Central Individuals, together with professionals.

The 2 international locations additionally mentioned they might attempt to cooperate in efforts to gradual local weather change and restart high-level diplomatic negotiations on commerce and labor rights.

(Reporting by Dave Graham, Steve Holland and Alexandra Alper; Further reporting by Nandita Bose and David Alire Garcia; Writing by Andy Sullivan; Modifying by Giles Elgood, Aurora Ellis and Jonathan Oatis)

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