Ministerial Forum on China-Africa Health Development issues Beijing Declaration to set priorities for health collaboration
President Xi Jinping thanked high-level representatives of international
organisations, including the GAVI Alliance, on Friday for their role in
supporting China-Africa health development.
President was speaking at the first-ever meeting of health ministers under the
Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC). Almost 50 African ministers of
health attended the event, together with observers from international
organisations, including Mercy Ahun, special representative to GAVI eligible
Xi Jinping emphasised his country’s continued commitment to supporting the work
of international organisations working in global health and helping African
countries achieve the Millennium Development Goals.
Also at the
Forum, health ministers and officials launched the Beijing Declaration of the Ministerial Forum on China-Africa Health
Development, which sets a road map for jointly addressing key health
challenges across Africa, including malaria, schistosomiasis, HIV/AIDS,
reproductive health, immunisation and vaccine-preventable diseases.
Declaration, China and African countries will embark on new efforts to achieve
sustainable, long-term health solutions, such as increasing partnerships on
joint research and addressing the shortage of healthcare workers. The
Declaration emphasises that health cooperation efforts will align with
African countries’ priorities as well as national and regional development
Sustainable health progress
African countries have enjoyed strong and effective partnerships on health for
half a century, based on our common experiences and our shared vision for a brighter
and healthier future for all our citizens,” said Awa Coll-Seck, health minister for Senegal and a member of the GAVI Alliance Board.
Beijing Declaration solidifies our governments’ commitments to developing and
implementing Africa-led strategies that drive sustainable health progress and
improve the lives of people across the continent.”
New type of partnership
Ahun addressed the Forum on ‘Future development prospects of promoting
China-Africa health cooperation’.
Forum) is a good example of a new type of partnership: bilateral arrangements
enhanced with and through multilateral support. The GAVI Alliance looks forward
to working closely with China and Africa on this ambitious endeavour and
creating a world where life-saving immunisation is available to those in need,
regardless of where they are and their ability to pay,” she said.
From 2002 to 2006, GAVI and the Chinese government co-funded a US$ 76 million project to target the vaccination of newborns and children under five in the western and central provices.
pointed to GAVI’s 2002-2010 partnership with China to support the introduction
of hepatitis B (hepB) vaccine in the remote west and central provinces as “an
extraordinary example of a mechanism that has achieved remarkable results.”
the Chinese Government decided to introduce the vaccine into its routine
immunisation programme. In the past decade, the percentage of newborn children
immunised with the first dose of hepB vaccine at birth has climbed from 64% to
over 90% in most areas. Less than one percent of children under the age of five
are now chronic carriers of hepB.
organisations represented at the Great Hall of the People, including GAVI and
its partners WHO and UNICEF, welcomed the China-Africa Forum as an innovative
mechanism to ensure dialogue between high-level leadership in support of health
development and cooperation between China and African countries.