Support 100 years of independent journalism.

  1. Chart of the Day
23 September 2021

How the poorest countries are still deprived of Covid-19 vaccines

Low-income countries have received just 0.4 per cent of vaccine doses.

By Ben van der Merwe

At a virtual summit yesterday, US president Joe Biden called on global leaders to ensure that 70 per cent of people in every country are vaccinated against Covid-19 by this time next year.

One fifth of the world’s population currently live in countries in which more than 70 per cent of people are fully vaccinated. Before China passed the threshold earlier this month, that figure was just 1.5 per cent.

The race to inoculate the world against the virus has been marred by deep inequalities. Just 0.4 per cent of all doses have been administered in the world’s poorest countries, a slight increase from 0.3 per cent in July.


While high-income countries have fully vaccinated 57 per cent of their populations, and are now considering booster campaigns, for low-income countries the figure is just 1.1 per cent.

There are some signs of progress. Since the end of August, the 25 per cent of countries that are the least vaccinated have, for the first time, been inoculating their populations at a faster rate than the top 25 per cent.

Select and enter your email address Quick and essential guide to domestic and global politics from the New Statesman's politics team. A weekly newsletter helping you fit together the pieces of the global economic slowdown. The New Statesman’s global affairs newsletter, every Monday and Friday. The best of the New Statesman, delivered to your inbox every weekday morning. The New Statesman’s weekly environment email on the politics, business and culture of the climate and nature crises - in your inbox every Thursday. Our weekly culture newsletter – from books and art to pop culture and memes – sent every Friday. A weekly round-up of some of the best articles featured in the most recent issue of the New Statesman, sent each Saturday. A newsletter showcasing the finest writing from the ideas section and the NS archive, covering political ideas, philosophy, criticism and intellectual history - sent every Wednesday. Sign up to receive information regarding NS events, subscription offers & product updates.
  • Administration / Office
  • Arts and Culture
  • Board Member
  • Business / Corporate Services
  • Client / Customer Services
  • Communications
  • Construction, Works, Engineering
  • Education, Curriculum and Teaching
  • Environment, Conservation and NRM
  • Facility / Grounds Management and Maintenance
  • Finance Management
  • Health - Medical and Nursing Management
  • HR, Training and Organisational Development
  • Information and Communications Technology
  • Information Services, Statistics, Records, Archives
  • Infrastructure Management - Transport, Utilities
  • Legal Officers and Practitioners
  • Librarians and Library Management
  • Management
  • Marketing
  • OH&S, Risk Management
  • Operations Management
  • Planning, Policy, Strategy
  • Printing, Design, Publishing, Web
  • Projects, Programs and Advisors
  • Property, Assets and Fleet Management
  • Public Relations and Media
  • Purchasing and Procurement
  • Quality Management
  • Science and Technical Research and Development
  • Security and Law Enforcement
  • Service Delivery
  • Sport and Recreation
  • Travel, Accommodation, Tourism
  • Wellbeing, Community / Social Services
I consent to New Statesman Media Group collecting my details provided via this form in accordance with the Privacy Policy
THANK YOU

This is partly due to a slowing in the pace of vaccination in highly vaccinated countries, but also due to a significant expansion of roll-out efforts in countries with poorer coverage. However, the very poorest countries continue to be left behind. Low-income countries are administering just 0.07 doses per million people each day.

Content from our partners
How industry is key for net zero
How to ensure net zero brings good growth and green jobs
Flooding is a major risk for our homes