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Wednesday, December 1, 2021

Qatar signs million dollar agreement to improve access to vaccines


The Qatar Fund for Development has signed a five-year agreement to provide access to vaccines for lower-income nations.

The Qatar Fund for Development (QFFD) has penned a five-year agreement with Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, and donated $10 million to support Gavi’s efforts in enhancing access to vaccines for lower-income nations.

Under the new agreement, QFFD will work with the Vaccine Alliance to ensure that zero-dose children, children who have not received a single dose of diphtheria, tetanus and pertussis, get access to immunization services.

“QFFD established a strong strategic partnership with Gavi to financially support the worlds poorest countries against vaccine-preventable diseases where Qatar has committed to provide an initial US $10 million to support immunization programs in the period between 2021 to 2025,” said Deputy Director General of projects of Qatar Fund for Development Misfer Al Shahwani.

QFFD’s donation and partnership will back Gavi’s mission to save children’s lives and protect their health by increasing access to immunization.

Qatar’s global vaccination efforts

While this latest deal focusses on non-COVID vaccines, when it comes to the coronavirus Qatar is among the world’s most vaccinated populations. Doha is now rolling out booster shots to the general public too.

The World Health Organization (WHO) has however condemned countries for making available Covid-19 booster shots for their vaccinated populations while people in disadvantaged areas are yet to receive primary doses.

Authorities in Qatar will point to the fact that the small nation has also greatly contributed to solving vaccine inequality through its various global vaccine and medical equipment donations.

Qatar has been extending a helping hand to the international community since the beginning of the coronavirus outbreak last year, providing vaccines worldwide.

In April, Qatar announced a major $100 million initiative to vaccinate more than three million refugees and displaced people in 20 countries around the world.

Qatar also supplied Paraguay with batches of 99,600 doses of the Moderna vaccine, hitting a target to donate a total of 400,000 vaccines to the South American country.

Qatar starts rolling out COVID booster shots for general public

Doha also provided Covid-19 vaccines to Afghan evacuees who were temporarily staying in the Gulf state following evacuation missions after the Taliban took over Afghanistan in August.

Qatar Airways carried over 2 million doses of the Moderna Covid-19 vaccine donated by the United States to Vietnam in an effort to combat the spread of the virus. The Gulf nations also provided one million Covid-19 vaccine doses to Pakistan.

In July, Qatar Charity and Jordan signed an agreement to provide the Hashemite kingdom with a QAR 10 million grant to support its vaccination efforts.

Lebanon also received 31,250 doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine along with an aid package from the QFFD.

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