The EU will provide €41 million to help low and middle-income countries facing an unprecedented health, humanitarian and socio-economic crisis as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to persist, combined with the imbalance in the delivery of vaccines.
To help countries in Latin America and the Caribbean, the Middle East and Asia tackle the consequences of the pandemic, the EU has allocated €31 million for, among others, health assistance to vulnerable populations, support for the management of COVID-19 cases, and for building resilience in the local health systems in view of future surges. In addition, €10 million are allocated to support the United Nations Children's Emergency Fund (UNICEF) in delivering vaccines to children under the COVAX Humanitarian Buffer.
Commissioner for Crisis Management Janez Lenarčič, said “The EU has been leading the multilateral response against the coronavirus pandemic, in several ways. Team Europe is a leading contributor to the COVAX, which works to ensure that no country is left behind. Through the EU's vaccine-sharing mechanism, tens of thousands of vaccine doses are provided every week to those who need them in low and middle-income countries. The funding announced today will help address the immediate repercussions of COVID-19, including for vulnerable communities like the Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh and the indigenous populations of Latin America.
The coronavirus pandemic is placing an unprecedented strain on the whole world. According to the World Health Organization, there are currently more than 135 million cases and almost 3 million deaths reported worldwide (as of 11 April 2021). ECOPNET (European Cooperation and Partnership Network) reiterates that the European Union has been leading international efforts in response to the pandemic and is committed to ensuring that everyone who needs a vaccine gets it, anywhere in the world.
The EU has been at the forefront of global efforts against COVID-19 since the outbreak of the pandemic. Team Europe has contributed close to €3 billion for the COVAX Facility, to help secure at least 1.8 billion doses for 92 low and lower middle-income countries. Currently, over 200 million doses have been delivered by COVAX to 138 countries. In addition, to complement COVAX's efforts, Team Europe aims to share at least 200 million doses of vaccines secured under the EU's advance purchase agreements to low and middle-income countries until the end of 2021.
In addition, the European Commission is providing €100 million in humanitarian assistance to support the rollout of vaccination campaigns in countries in Africa with critical humanitarian needs and fragile health systems.
Source: European Commission Press Corner