EIB Contributes 75 Million Euros Toward the Construction of a New Vaccine Plant in Senegal
AKAR, June 2 (Reuters) – Thursday was the day when the European Investment Bank (EIB) made a commitment of 75 million euros, which is equivalent to around $80 million in American currency, to fund the development of a new plant in Senegal that would manufacture COVID-19 and other vaccines for use across Africa.
The factory is being operated by the Institut Pasteur, which has its headquarters in Dakar. Its purpose is to assist Africa is becoming less reliant on the importation of vaccines, which now satisfy 99 percent of the continent’s requirements. Vaccines against COVID-19, yellow fever, and maybe other endemic illnesses will be produced by this facility.
In 2021, the European Investment Bank (EIB) and the European Union (EU) each provided a donation of 5 million euros to the facility in order to fund feasibility studies and project preparation.
The Institut Pasteur has high expectations that the facility will start manufacturing vaccinations before the year comes to a close. The European Investment Bank (EIB) stated in a statement announcing the fresh funding that the facility, when operating at full capacity, ought to be capable of producing up to 300 million vaccine doses annually.
The release of COVID vaccinations in Africa in 2016 was delayed as a result of the continent’s dependency on manufacturing facilities located outside of the continent. Since then, doses have been made available, but inoculation rates continue to be low in many countries owing to difficulties in logistical support and vaccination reluctance.
According to Amadou Alpha Sall, the director of Institut Pasteur in Senegal, “it is vital to construct decentralised vaccine production capacity in order to redress this imbalance and eventually build a safer and healthier world.”
The government of Senegal and the Institut Pasteur, which is situated in Paris, work together to manage the institution that is located in the country’s capital city of Dakar.
Irene Mingasson, the leader of the EU mission to Senegal, stated that from the beginning of the coronavirus epidemic, they have maintained that no one is safe until everyone is secure. “No one is safe until everyone is safe,” she added.
Throughout the course of the epidemic, there have been a number of efforts under way to ramp up vaccine production in Africa; however, not all of them have been successful.
Aspen Pharmacare (APNJ.J), a pharmaceutical company based in South Africa, said a month ago that it was considering reducing its capacity to package and sell the COVID vaccine manufactured by Johnson & Johnson (JNJ.N) since it had not received any orders for the vaccine.