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IMF proposes USD 50 billion global vaccination plan


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Washington: International Monetary Fund (IMF) Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva

The International Monetary Fund has proposed a USD 50 billion global vaccination plan that would cover at least 40 percent of the global population by the end of 2021 and at least 60 percent by the first half of 2022.

With strong and coordinated action now—and with little in terms of financing relative to the outsized benefits—the world can durably exit this unprecedented health and economic crisis, IMF Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva said in her address to the G20 Health Summit.

“For some time, we have been warning of dangerous divergence of economic fortunes. It will only worsen as the gap widens between wealthy countries that have access to vaccines and poor countries that do not,” she said.

IMF, she said building on the work of the WHO, World Bank, Gavi, African Union, and others, have proposed targets, estimates financing requirements, and lays out pragmatic action, which has three broad elements.

“First, vaccinating of at least 40 percent of the global population by end-2021 and at least 60 percent by the first half of 2022. To do so requires additional upfront grants to COVAX, donating surplus doses and free cross-border flows of raw materials and finished vaccines,” she said.

Second, insuring against downside risks such as new variants that may necessitate booster shots. This means investing in additional vaccine production capacity by one billion doses, scaling up genomic surveillance and supply-chain surveillance, and contingency plans to handle virus mutations or supply shocks.

Third, managing the interim period where vaccine supply is limited with widespread testing and tracing, therapeutic and public health measures, and, at the same time, ramping up preparations for vaccine deployment together with any approved dose-stretching strategies.

“The proposal would cost around USD 50 billion in a combination of grants, national government resources, and concessional financing,” Georgieva said.

“We envisage grant financing of at least USD 35 billion. G20 governments have already identified as important to address the USD 22 billion grant funding gap noted by the ACT-Accelerator,” she said.

“Our proposal estimates this needs to be topped up by an additional USD 13 billion in grant contributions. The remainder of the overall financing plan – around USD 15 billion – could come from national governments, supported by COVID-19 concessional financing, primarily from facilities already created by multilateral development banks,” said the IMF Managing Director.

Also Read: COVID herd immunity may be unrealistic: South African experts

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