Today, the United States International Development Finance Corporation (DFC) in collaboration with the World Bank Group, Germany, and France, announced a joint investment to boost vaccine manufacturing capacity in Africa. As Vice Chair of DFC’s Board of Directors, I was proud to vote yes on this deal. This financing will enable a South African business to ramp up manufacturing capacity and produce more than 500 million doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine by the end of 2022.
If the COVID-19 pandemic has revealed anything, it’s that vaccine manufacturing must be dramatically scaled up. Africa currently imports 99 percent of its vaccines. The United States is committed to sustainably boosting Africa’s vaccine manufacturing capacity and vaccine access, while taking bold, immediate action to help African nations fight COVID-19.
This deal builds on President Biden’s recent announcements that the U.S. would donate 80 million vaccines to share with the world and that we will purchase and provide an additional 500 million doses of the Pfizer vaccine to COVAX, the global vaccine initiative, to support 92 low- and middle-income countries and the African Union. The United States remains the largest donor to COVAX. USAID has also rushed supplies of oxygen, PPE and other materials to India, Nepal, Bangladesh, and other developing countries to counter frightening spikes in caseloads and hospitalizations.
For the latest updates on USAID’s response to COVID-19, visit: USAID's COVID-19 Response | US Agency for International Development.