President Biden and South Korean President Moon Jae-in Friday unveiled a COVID-19 vaccine partnership and pledged for the two nations will work clo
“We agreed to establish a comprehensive vaccine partnership to expand the manufacture of vaccines that have been approved safe and effective, and so we can scale up global vaccine supplies,” Biden said at a White House press conference featuring the two leaders. “We’ll strengthen our ability to fight the pandemic and respond to future biological threats.”
South Korean officials are seeking to expand the nation’s vaccine supply in response to a recent shortage. The Biden administration expects to export 80 million vaccine doses abroad in the coming weeks.
Moon said the US-South Korean vaccine partnership would “boost global vaccine supply and contribute to accelerating a complete ending of COVID-19.” He thanked Biden for his pledge to supply vaccine doses to South Korean military members.
The two leaders also detailed plans to expand cooperation on the production of key technologies such as semiconductors. Ford and GM were recently forced to shut down some factories due to a shortage of semiconductors.
Executives from several top firms, including Samsung, Hyundai and LG, were in attendance at the summit. Biden praised the companies for committing to invest billions at US facilities.
“These new investments are going to create thousands of good-paying jobs and jobs of the future right here in the United States,” Biden said. “And they’re going to help fortify and secure supply chains for things like semiconductors and electric batteries.”
The collaborations were unveiled as US officials work to strengthen supply chains in response to the pandemic, which prompted a global halt to commerce that contributed to product shortages.
“From semiconductors, [electric vehicle] batteries, pharmaceuticals to other cutting edge manufacturing technology sectors in an effort to build secure supply chains, we’re committed to working in close concert,” Moon added.