Geneva, 3 July 2020 – Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance welcomed bold new financial commitments that will help ensure developing countries have access to eventual COVID-19 vaccines. The commitments will be channeled through Gavi’s Advance Market Commitment for COVID-19 Vaccines (Gavi COVAX AMC), a new financing instrument that is part of broader efforts to enable global equitable access to future COVID-19 vaccines by incentivising vaccine manufacturers to make early at-risk investments in manufacturing capacity.
The commitments were made at a high-level summit hosted by the European Commission and the non-profit Global Citizen to mobilise additional funding to develop and universally deploy coronavirus vaccines, tests and treatments. One of the main goals of the summit was to support the work of the Access to COVID-19 Tools (ACT) Accelerator, an unprecedented global collaboration to develop and equitably distribute tests, treatments and vaccines.
TransferWise, a global technology company that specializes in moving money around the world, will waive all fees on donations to Gavi’s COVAX AMC on its money transfer platform, up to a total amount of US$ 7 million.
“Gavi's work to ensure future COVID-19 vaccines reach those in greatest need will be critical to ending this pandemic,” said Taavet Hinrikus, co-founder and chairman of TransferWise. “While we can’t offer health expertise, we can help make sure those working to find a vaccine get the maximum amount of money from supporters. Ensuring donations can be used fully, and aren’t reduced by hidden foreign exchange fees, means more people across the world can support Gavi’s Advance Market Commitment for COVID-19 Vaccines – regardless of their location or currency.”
“The partnership with TransferWise will enable the public to contribute to the fight against the COVID-19, and illustrates how the private sector can unlock common barriers in global health.” said Dr Seth Berkley, CEO of Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance.
A foundation which asked to remain anonymous also announced a new commitment of CHF 20 million to the Gavi COVAX AMC. The aim of the Gavi COVAX AMC is to make an eventual vaccine or vaccines affordable and available to developing countries. “This generous cash contribution will help ensure that developing countries have access to successful COVID-19 vaccines, and support the global effort to slow and ultimately stop the pandemic.” Berkley added.
The Gavi COVAX AMC is part of the Gavi-coordinated COVAX Facility, which aims to provide demand guarantees to vaccine manufacturers in order to incentivise investments in manufacturing capacity across a broad portfolio of vaccine candidates. These investments will be vital to managing the risk that most vaccine candidates are likely to fail, and to enable global equitable access to a significant supply of a successful vaccine or vaccines. The COVAX Facility is open to all countries that wish to participate.
These efforts are taking place through the COVAX pillar of the ACT Accelerator. Gavi, the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) and WHO are working together to invest in research and development (R&D) and vaccine production capacity across several candidate vaccines to maximise chances of success, so that, upon regulatory approval of a successful vaccine, a significant supply of doses can be made available rapidly and allocated equitably in order to immunise high priority groups such as, for example, health care workers.
The COVAX pillar is aiming to provide 2 billion doses by the end of 2021, an effort which will require US$ 18.1 billion in funding – including US$ 11.3 billion in the next 6 months.