UN WELCOMES NEARLY $1B IN NEW PLEDGES
Boost will bolster access to lifesaving tests, treatments and vaccines to end COVID-19
The United Nations and its partners today welcomed a monumental show of solidarity as governments, private sector, civil society and international organizations committed support to the Access to COVID-19 Tools- (ACT) Accelerator initiative launched by the World Health Organization alongside international partners.
Today, nearly US$1 billion in new financing has been committed to the initiative - the world’s most comprehensive multilateral end-to-end solution to the devastating COVID-19 pandemic.
The ACT-Accelerator, which was co-launched by the World Health Organization, European Commission, France and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation just five months ago, needs an additional US$35 billion to realize its goals of producing 2 billion vaccine doses, 245 million treatments and 500 million tests. The new commitments to the initiative are welcome and will be leveraged to catalyze further funding to continue the ACT-Accelerator’s groundbreaking work.
Most urgently, the ACT-Accelerator requires US$15 billion to support immediate capacity-building—for research and development, manufacturing, procurement and delivery systems—by the end of the year.
Convening a high-level event at the 75th Session of the UN General Assembly to urgently mobilize support for the ACT-Accelerator, Secretary-General António Guterres commended on the “extraordinary international effort to address a human crisis like no other in our lifetimes,” adding that more efforts must be made to further “deepen” the remarkable progress so far.
“It is in every country’s national and economic self-interest to work together to massively expand access to tests and treatments, and to support a vaccine as a global public good—a “people’s vaccine” available and affordable for everyone, everywhere.”
”The ACT-Accelerator—including its COVAX Facility—is the vehicle to get us there. Investing in the ACT-Accelerator will accelerate every country’s own recovery,” said Mr. Guterres who co-hosted the event with the United Kingdom’s Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab, South Africa’s Health Minister Zweli Mkhize, and the Director-General of World Health Organization, Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus.
Unprecedented Global Collaboration
The ACT-Accelerator, which was launched just five months ago, is an unprecedented global collaboration of the world’s top international health organizations working together to accelerate the development, production, and equitable delivery of COVID-19 tests, treatments, and vaccines.
“We have a duty to ensure vaccines, treatments and tests for COVID-19 are available to all—stopping the global spread of the pandemic protects the British people and will put humanity on the road to recovery. Collaboration through the ACT-Accelerator is critical to promoting development, production and access for all countries,” said UK Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab.
The United Kingdom recently committed up to £571m (approximately US$ 732m) for COVAX. This includes up to £500m for the Gavi Advanced Market Commitment for COVID-19 (COVAX AMC) vaccines—a financing instrument that incentivises vaccine manufacturers to produce sufficient COVID-19 vaccines to ensure access for developing countries.
Today, the UK Foreign Secretary called for more support, pledging that this £500m commitment would include £1 (IS$ 1.29) in matched funding for every US$4 committed by others for up to £250m (approximately US$ 321m).
Germany, Canada and Sweden have also made new commitments to the COVAX AMC of Euro 100 million, CAD$ 220 million and US$ 10 million respectively. These are eligible for matching with today’s UK matching commitment.
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