G7 to offer 1 billion doses of vaccines

Britain says the Group of Seven nations are likely to agree to provide the world with at least 1 billion doses of coronavirus vaccines, as part of the effort to contain the pandemic.

The first in-person G7 summit in around two years will begin on Friday afternoon, local time, in Cornwall, southwest England.

One subject on the agenda will be how to distribute the vaccines in order to stem the spread of the virus worldwide.

In a statement released on Thursday, Britain, the host of the summit, said world leaders are expected to announce that they will provide at least 1 billion vaccine doses to the world in order to end the pandemic in 2022.

In the lead-up to the summit, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson expressed his intention to call on the leaders to help vaccinate the entire world by the end of next year. He says Britain will donate at least 100 million shots.

The United States has also pledged to provide 500 million doses. But it is unclear whether that figure is included in the 1 billion doses that Britain mentioned.

These moves are apparently aimed at collectively countering China's vaccine diplomacy.