The African Union (AU) announced on Tuesday April 13 the launch of an “
African vaccine manufacturing partnership
” (VAPM) with the objective of creating five vaccine research and manufacturing hubs on the continent.
This project was sealed by the signing of agreements with the Coalition for Innovations in Epidemic Preparedness (Cepi) - which is already co-piloting the Covax program with the Vaccine Alliance (Gavi) and the WHO - as well than with the pan-African bank Afreximbank (Africa Export-Import Bank) and the Africa Finance Corporation, a pan-African financial institution.
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These five vaccine research and manufacturing poles will be developed in the “
next ten to fifteen years
”, in each of the five major regions of the continent (North Africa, West Africa, Central Africa, Southern Africa, East Africa) , detailed John Nkengasong, director of the African Center for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC), which reports to the AU.
The objective is to manufacture locally, within 20 years, 60% of the vaccines used on the continent, against 1% currently.
We are aware that this is a real challenge,
" said Mr. Nkengasong, at the end of two days of virtual summit on this theme.
if Africa does not plan today to meet its vaccine safety needs, then we are definitely preparing for failure,
" he added.
He underlined the importance of “
making a leap forward by relying on messenger RNA technology
”, and mentioned the interest of Senegal, South Africa and Rwanda to engage in this process. way.
Cepi Director Richard Hatchett praised his participation in “
strengthening Africa's capacity to prevent, detect and respond to emerging and re-emerging infectious threats
It will take sufficient financial resources, harmonized legislation in Africa and incentives,
" said the current President of the African Union, Felix Tshisekedi, "
the African diaspora around the world to help with capacity building drug and vaccine manufacturing in Africa
This project "will
not be content to fight against Covid-19 but will allow the establishment of a production of vaccines for known diseases and to prepare for the epidemics and pandemics to come
", added the president of the DRC.
The issue of unequal access to vaccines in Africa has been highlighted by the coronavirus pandemic.
WHO Africa thus deplored on April 8 that "
less than 2% of the 690 million doses of anti-Covid-19 vaccine administered so far globally have been in Africa
Nearly 13 million doses had been administered in Africa by that date, according to the WHO.