Japan allocates 3 million US dollars to UNICEF to improve the cold chain for preserving and storing vaccines in Gabon

17 March 2022

Like many countries across the world, COVID-19 is also a concern for public health in Gabon. The government not only introduced measures to prevent the spread of the virus and manage the pandemic, but also developed a national vaccination strategy which was launched on 23 March 2021 and continues to be rolled out across the country.

Gabon has a large stock of a variety of vaccines (three million doses in total) to vaccinate a population of 1,014,993 eligible inhabitants. With a target vaccination rate of 50% of the total population, 24.81% of the population has been fully vaccinated, and 29.38% has received a first dose.

To show solidarity and encourage the Gabonese government’s efforts, the Japanese government has allocated 3 million US dollars in emergency aid (1.7 billion FCFA) to Gabon to support its COVID-19 vaccination plan via the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF). This support from the Japanese people is part of a total budget of 20 million dollars offered to 10 countries (Botswana, Gabon, Gambia, Guinea-Bissau, Lesotho, Namibia, Niger, South Africa, Tanzania and Togo).

This financial support from Japan will allow the Ministry of Health & Social Affairs and UNICEF to boost the government's capacity to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic by providing basic universal health care, developing cold chain systems to better store and transport vaccines, and boosting institutional capacity to extend high-quality vaccination services to the most vulnerable communities across the entire country.

More specifically, this funding will be used to:

- purchase cold-chain and logistical support equipment;

- boost institutional capacity for managing this equipment.

This tripartite cooperation between the Gabonese government, the Japanese government and UNICEF will support efficient, innovative strategies, and improve the vaccination services offered to the Gabonese people to effectively fight COVID-19 in Gabon.

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