On Monday, Ecuador’s Foreign Affairs Minister Luis Gallegos called on the international community to cooperate with the Caribbean and Latin American countries to guarantee medical supplies and potential vaccines against Coronavirus.
Gallegos, in a virtual talk of foreign ministers on the sidelines of the 38th session of the United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC), highlighted the challenges facing middle-income countries amid the pandemic, “such as the weakness of their public health systems, high levels of debt and limited fiscal space.”
With that in mind, Gallegos called on the international community “to establish or increase, as appropriate, cooperation to guarantee equal access to medical supplies, medicine and future vaccines against COVID-19.”
As a result of the pandemic’s economic crisis, the population living in extreme poverty in Latin America and the Caribbean could reach 83.4 million in 2020, according to a joint report by ECLAC and the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization.
According to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University, Ecuador, one of the countries hardest hit by COVID-19 in the region, has so far reported 162,178 infections and 12,573 deaths.