A batch of 384.000 COVID-19 vaccine doses arrived yesteday 8 March in Maputo as part of the first wave of vaccines provided to African countries through the COVAX global vaccine initiative.
This delivery, out of a total expected of 2.064 000 COVAX vaccines that Mozambique will receive over the coming next months, are part of a tranche of Astra-Zeneca/Oxford vaccines produced by the India Serum Institute.
The vaccines were received at the airport by Mozambique´s Prime Minister Dr Carlos Agostinho do Rosário and Minister of Health Dr Armindo Thiago, accompanied by the UN Resident Coordinator Myrta Kaulard, the EU Ambassador Antonio Sánchez-Benedito, the Representatives of the World Health Organization, Dr Joaquim Saweca, and UNICEF Katarina Johansson, as well as the ambassadors of other partner countries participating at COVAX.
Speaking at the event, the EU Ambassador Antonio Sánchez-Benedito said: “Making sure everyone has access to safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines is a top priority of the European Union. We work together to guarantee that partner countries like Mozambique receive the vaccines and start vaccinating its citizens. Team Europe, the European Union together with the EU Member States, has been leading global efforts to ensure that COVID-19 vaccines are available to all countries and to as many citizens as possible. Team Europe is among the largest contributor to the COVAX mechanism with more than EUR 2.2 billion. Our shared values of humanism and solidarity are at the centre of the efforts for global health and a pandemic-free world.”
This contribution of Team Europe will support Mozambique's National COVID-19 Vaccination Plan, launched by the Mozambican Government on 5 March. In line with the National Vaccination Plan, Mozambique aims to vaccinate up to 16.8 million people by June 2022.
Overall, Team Europe's global efforts to fight the COVID-19 pandemic have surpassed EUR 38 billion, of which EUR 8 billion have been destined for Africa. For Mozambique specifically, the Team Europe has to date committed over EUR 500 million, of which more than EUR 220 has already been disbursed. These funds have been used to mitigate the socio-economic impact of the pandemic and, among others, to increase the capacities of the health and other social sectors. Moreover, the EU will also contribute with funds to implement Mozambique's National Vaccination Plan.
The COVAX Facility aims to deliver at least 2 billion doses before the end of this year, of which 1.3 billion to 92 countries that are eligible for such support. The EU and its Member States are committed to this unprecedented global effort to make sure all citizens have access to safe and effective vaccines.
COVAX is co-led by GAVI, the Vaccine Alliance, the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI), working in partnership with UNICEF, civil society organisations, manufacturers and others stakeholders.