Vaccins humains: la Belgique en tête des exportations

Belgium was the largest exporter of human vaccines in 2022, reaching $46 billion, according to Eurostat data.

The amount represents a 3.6% increase over 2021 and a record.

Within these exports, 35.7 billion dollars corresponded to vaccines related to coronavirus.

According to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), vaccine production is highly specialized, subject to comparative advantages and concentrated in a few countries.

The Covid-19 pandemic boosted exports of vaccines for human medicine. In the case of Belgium, they rose from $11.8 billion in 2020 to $44.5 billion in 2021.

The latest available trade data reveal that while most countries in the world import vaccines, relatively few export them.

As of 2020, vaccines are imported by 208 economies (relative to other commodities, vaccines rank in the 6th percentile for the total number of importing countries), while they are exported by 90 economies (relative to other commodities, vaccines rank in the 35th percentile for the total number of exporting countries). All countries need vaccines, but not all can produce them.

Human vaccines

Although each vaccine involves different components, the vaccine supply chain can be divided into three, and sometimes four, key steps (depending on the vaccine), according to the OECD.

First, there is drug discovery, then mass production, followed by distribution and administration, and finally reverse logistics (in case products such as portable coolers need to be returned).

Human vaccine exports from China went from $280 million in 2020, to $15.66 billion in 2021, to just $993 million in 2022.

According to the U.S. government, vaccines are injections, liquids, pills or nasal sprays that people take to teach their body’s immune system to recognize and defend against harmful germs.

For example, vaccines are available to protect against diseases caused by viruses, such as those that cause influenza and Covid-19, and bacteria, such as tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis.

Finally, exports of human vaccines from United States rose from $1.77 billion to $14.81 billion from 2020 to 2021, then dropped to $7.92 billion, according to Commerce Department statistics.


Redacción Opportimes

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