Standard Chartered Bank said on Thursday, July 15, it is providing $200 million in not-for-profit funding to the African Export-Import Bank's (Afreximbank) COVID-19 vaccine procurement framework for Africa.
The facility is part of Afreximbank's Advance Procurement Commitment framework, under which it has provided a $2-billion guarantee to manufacturers to secure access to vaccine doses for African nations, Standard Chartered said in a statement.
"The speed of vaccine rollout is not only a healthcare issue but is increasingly a differentiator of near-term, post-pandemic economic recovery for African nations," said Simon Cooper, Standard Chartered's chief executive for corporate, commercial, and institutional banking.
Africa struggled early on to secure vaccines as wealthy countries cornered supplies for their own citizens.
The continent had aimed to secure 800 million doses by December but has so far received only a fraction of that.
John Nkengasong, head of the Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention, said earlier this month that just 1% of Africans had been fully inoculated. – Rappler.com