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UN needs ‘immediate infusion’ of $15 billion for global vaccine fund

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres calls Wednesday for an “immediate infusion” of $15 billion to a global pool for the procurement and distribution of Covid-19 vaccines.

The ACT-Accelerator, led by the World Health Organization, has received around $3 billion of the $38 billion needed to meet the goal of producing and delivering two billion vaccine doses, 245 million treatments and 500 million diagnostic tests over the next year.

Notable new pledges included an additional 100 million euros ($117 million) by German Chancellor Angela Merkel to the fund beyond the 675 million euros Germany has already committed.

In this file photo taken on April 29, 2020, an engineer looks at monkey kidney cells as he tests an experimental vaccine for the COVID-19 coronavirus inside the Cells Culture Room laboratory at the Sinovac Biotech facilities in Beijing. (Nicolas Asfouri/AFP)

Britain’s foreign minister Dominic Raab says his country, which has committed 250 million pounds ($320 million), would spend another pound for every four dollars committed by others, up to an additional 250 million pounds.

The World Bank’s president David Malpass said he had proposed “up to $12 billion of fast-track financing” to countries for the purchase and deployment of COVID-19 vaccine, also previously announced.

“These resources are crucial now to avoid losing the window of opportunity for advance purchase and production, to build stocks in parallel with licensing, to boost research, and to help countries prepare to optimize the new vaccines when they arrive,” Guterres says at the virtual summit.

— AFP

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