Irish Government to donate at least one million Covid-19 vaccines to low-income countries
The Government is to donate at least one million vaccines to low-income countries, it has been confirmed.
The Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly and the Minister for Foreign Affairs Simon Coveney said that Ireland will donate the doses to the Covax programme.
It comes as the European Union said it will donate another 200 million Covid-19 vaccines to developing countries.
Mr Donnelly said that universal and fair access to Covid-19 vaccines and treatments is a priority for Ireland and for the EU.
The Covax programme aims to provide poorer states with vaccines from wealthy countries.
“As the current phase of Ireland’s vaccination programme nears completion, it is important for Ireland to demonstrate solidarity with developing countries during this global pandemic,” Mr Donnelly said.
“I am very pleased therefore to announce that Ireland will contribute one million Covid-19 vaccines to the Covax global vaccine initiative.
“This donation represents the first step in Irelands commitment to Covax and vaccine donation, with other possibilities for vaccine sharing to help those most in need likely to arise later in the year.”
Mr Coveney said he is delighted to share Ireland’s surplus vaccines.
“It is a mark of Ireland’s solidarity with developing countries during this truly global crisis,” he added.
“To keep ourselves safe, we must ensure everyone is protected from Covid-19.
“This virus does not respect international borders, as we have learned.”
Minister of State for Overseas Aid and the Diaspora Colm Brophy added: “To ensure that the vaccination rollouts in recipient countries are well-managed and well-resourced, my department has also allocated an additional three million euro to Covax before the end of the year.
“This brings Ireland’s total contribution to Covax to seven million euro in 2021, part of Ireland’s contribution to Global Health of over 100 million euro.”