China made an agreement to send 600 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines to Africa and they are trying to persuade companies to invest money into Africa over the next three years, President Xi Jinping announced Monday.
President Jinping made the promise in a speech during the opening ceremony of a China-Africa forum on economic cooperation.
President Jinping expects to supply 1 billion doses to Africa in all and the plan is to get the other 400 million doses from Chinese companies based in Africa.
“We need to put people and their lives first, be guided by science, support waiving intellectual property rights on COVID-19 vaccines, and truly ensure the accessibility and affordability of vaccines in Africa to bridge the immunization gap,” he said.
China already sent close to 200 doses to parts of Africa, where the vaccination rates have dropped due to concern over the spread of the new omicron variant of the coronavirus.
Initial reports said that the omicron variant was discovered in South Africa, but Dutch officials said that it was in Western Europe before making its way to Southern Africa.
South African President Cyril Ramaphosa thanked China for its support and said African economies should be able to manufacture COVID-19 vaccines.