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ADB starts US$9bn Covid-19 vaccines fund for Asian developing countries

UNPRECEDENTED: ADB President Masatsugu Asakawa

ECONOMYNEXT – Manila-based Asian Development Bank said it had started a 9 billion US dollar fund to help member countries buy vaccines, store and distribute them.

A Rapid Response Component will provide timely support for critical vaccine diagnostics, procurement of vaccines, and transporting vaccines from the place of purchase to ADB’s developing members.

A Project Investment Component will could be used to build systems for distribution, delivery, and administration of vaccines along with associated investments in building capacity, community outreach, and surveillance.

This may include such areas as cold-chain storage and transportation, vehicles, distribution infrastructure, processing facilities, and other physical investments.

“As ADB’s developing members prepare to vaccinate their people as soon as possible, they need financing to procure vaccines as well as appropriate plans and knowledge to be able to safely, equitably, and efficiently manage the vaccination process,” ADB President Masatsugu Asakawa said in a statement.

“APVAX will play a critical role in helping our developing members meet these challenges, overcome the pandemic, and focus on economic recovery.”

Funds may also be used to develop or expand vaccine manufacturing capacity in developing members.

More than 14.3 million positive Coronavirus cases have been identified in Asia and the Pacific, causing more than 200,000 deaths.

Developing Asia is projected to contract by 0.4 percent in 2020—the first regional gross domestic product contraction since the early 1960s. (Colombo/Dec11/2020)





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