Explaining Brazil #137: Trading 5G for coronavirus vaccines

How Brazil is using the country's upcoming 5G auction as a bargaining chip to receive more coronavirus vaccines

Countries around the world are scrambling to get their hands on coronavirus vaccines — and Brazil’s efforts to inoculate its population have certainly been underwhelming. But the government now seems keen on using its upcoming 5G auction as a bargaining chip in talks with countries that produce leading immunizers.

And the Bolsonaro administration is not even trying to be subtle in its mixing of the two issues. The Communications Minister has even been included in discussions around the national immunization plan, and has been sent on a roadshow aiming to secure bidders for 5G networks and suppliers for coronavirus vaccines.

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On this episode:

  • Mauricio Santoro holds a Ph.D. in Political Science. He is currently an Assistant Professor and Head of the Department of International Relations at the State University of Rio de Janeiro. He also writes op-eds for The Brazilian Report. He has been commissioned to write a book on Brazil-China relations.
  • David Speers is an award-winning Australian journalist. He has been the host of PM Agenda, The Last Word, and Speers, and is currently host of ABC’s Insiders, Australia’s most popular political affairs program.

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