Covid-19: Africa needs vaccine equity to recover sustainably – Okonjo-Iweala

Covid-19: Africa needs vaccine equity to recover sustainably - Okonjo-Iweala

WTO Boss, Dr Ngozi Okonjo Iweala disclosed that it is important Africa benefits from vaccine equity to give young entrepreneurs on the continent a platform and ecosystem to thrive.

Nigeria’s former Finance Minister disclosed this at the UBA Africa Day event on Tuesday themed: “Africa to the world.”

What Okonjo-Iweala said about vaccine equity

“If we are to recover sustainably from this crisis, we have to correct vaccine inequity that is evident in the world today,” she said.

“The fact that we have vaccinated so little is not acceptable, the fact that we import 99% of vaccines and 90% of pharmaceuticals is not acceptable.

Going back to vaccines, the IMF says if we spend $50 billion to vaccinate 40% of the world’s population by 2021, and 60% by 2022, we would be able to reverse vaccine inequity and the world’s global GDP can gain $9 trillion by 2025.

It is important for the world, that Africa benefit from vaccine equity, we cannot recover sustainably without it,” she added.

She also stated that Africa needs to fight the pandemic, either by getting more vaccines in or manufacturing locally, citing that the WTO stands ready to do it and keep supply chains open for this.

“When we do this, not if, when we reverse this inequity, we will be able to create the type of platform, that will give young entrepreneurs, and show the world that Africa and its youth can be part of the present and very important part of the future.”

What you should know

Recall Nairametrics reported last month that The International Monetary Fund (IMF) stated that a continued lack of access to vaccines will see Africa’s projected growth at 3.4% compared to the rest of the world at 6%.

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