World Bank approves $12 billion for COVID-19 vaccines

The World Bank's Board of Executive Directors today approved an envelope of $12 billion for developing countries to finance the purchase and distribution of COVID-19 vaccines, tests, and treatments for their citizens.

The financing, which aims to support vaccination of up to a billion people, is part of an overall World Bank Group (WBG) package of up to $160 billion through June 2021 to help developing countries fight the COVID-19 pandemic. It adds new financing to the World Bank's COVID-19 emergency response programs that are already reaching 111 countries. This financing package helps signal to the research and pharmaceutical industry that citizens in developing countries also need access to safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines. It will also provide financing and technical support so that developing countries can prepare for deploying vaccines at scale, in coordination with international partners. In implementing the program, the World Bank will support multilateral efforts currently led by WHO and COVAX.

"We are extending and expanding our fast-track approach to address the COVID emergency so that developing countries have fair and equal access to vaccines," said World Bank Group President David Malpass. "Access to safe and effective vaccines and strengthened delivery systems is key to alter the course of the pandemic and help countries experiencing catastrophic economic and fiscal impacts move toward a resilient recovery."

Developing countries will have different ways to acquire and deliver approved vaccines. The approach draws on the WBG's significant expertise in supporting large scale immunization programs for vaccine preventable diseases, as well as public health programs to tackle infectious diseases such as HIV, tuberculosis, malaria and neglected tropical diseases.

In addition to purchasing COVID-19 vaccines, the WBG financing will also support countries to access to COVID-19 tests and treatments, and expand immunization capacity to help health systems deploy the vaccines effectively. This includes supply chain and logistics management for vaccine storage handling, trained vaccinators, and large-scale communication and outreach campaigns to reach communities and households.

The new financing builds on the broader World Bank health program, which focuses on strengthening the health systems and health service delivery. The Bank's robust network of technical advice and implementation support capacity, already working on the ground in many developing countries with partner agencies, will help to further strengthen these systems.

The International Finance Corporation (IFC), the WBG's private sector arm, is also investing in vaccine manufacturers through its $4 billion Global Health Platform. The aim is to encourage ramped-up production of COVID-19 vaccines and therapeutics in advanced and developing economies alike - and to ensure that emerging markets gain access to available doses.

World Bank Group COVID-19 Response

The World Bank Group, one of the largest sources of funding and knowledge for developing countries, is taking broad, fast action to help developing countries strengthen their pandemic response. We are supporting public health interventions, working to ensure the flow of critical supplies and equipment, and helping the private sector continue to operate and sustain jobs. We will be deploying up to $160 billion in financial support over 15 months to help more than 100 countries protect the poor and vulnerable, support businesses, and bolster economic recovery. This includes $50 billion of new IDA resources through grants and highly concessional loans.

Most Popular Now

COVID-19 containment shaped by strength, duration …

"Much of the discussion so far related to the future trajectory of COVID-19 has rightly been focused on the effects of seasonality and non-pharmaceutical interventions [N...

Scientists identify synthetic mini-antibody to com…

The ability of SARS-CoV-2 to infect cells depends on interactions between the viral spike protein and the human cell surface protein ACE2. To enable the virus to hook ont...

New drug candidate for the treatment of COVID-19

Researchers from the University of Kent, the Goethe-University in Frankfurt am Main (Germany), and the Hannover Medical School (Germany) have identified a drug with the p...

Cancer treatment could be replicated for COVID-19

Beta-blockers could potentially be used to treat COVID-19, according to a new international study by Italian and Australian scientists. University of South Australia c...

European Commission approves contract with BioNTec…

Today, the European Commission approved a fourth contract with pharmaceutical companies BioNTech and Pfizer, which provides for the initial purchase of 200 million doses ...

Pre-existing coronavirus antibodies could help pro…

Researchers at the Francis Crick Institute and University College London have found that some antibodies, created by the immune system during infection with common cold c...

Remdesivir for COVID-19: FDA approved but still un…

The United States has become the epicenter of the world in the ever increasing pandemic of COVID-19. While public health prevention strategies of social distancing, crowd...

Fluvoxamine may prevent serious illness in COVID-1…

In a preliminary study of COVID-19 patients with mild-to-moderate disease who were attempting to recover in their homes, researchers at Washington University School of Me...

The Sputnik V COVID-19 vaccine efficacy amounted t…

The National Research Center for Epidemiology and Microbiology named after N.F. Gamaleya of the Ministry of Health of the Russian Federation (Gamaleya Center) and the Rus...

Medicago and GSK announce start of Phase 2/3 clini…

Medicago, a biopharmaceutical company headquartered in Quebec City, and GSK have announced the start of Phase 2/3 clinical trials of its plant-derived vaccine candidate f...

Lilly's neutralizing antibody bamlanivimab (LY-CoV…

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) granted Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) for Eli Lilly and Company's (NYSE: LLY) investigational neutralizing antibody bamlan...

Swissmedic begins rolling review of Moderna's mRNA…

Moderna, Inc., (Nasdaq: MRNA) a biotechnology company pioneering messenger RNA (mRNA) therapeutics and vaccines to create a new generation of transformative medicines for...