The UAE has stressed the importance of international cooperation in accelerating the distribution of COVID-19 vaccines, as it believes it’s key to boosting global immunity.
This was highlighted by Reem bint Ibrahim Al Hashemy, Minister of State for International Cooperation, at the first virtual meeting of the International Forum on COVID-19 Vaccine Cooperation.
Hosted by China, the meet was attended by representatives from over 20 countries.
The forum aims to link countries that develop and produce vaccines with companies and stakeholders in order to promote the equitable distribution of vaccines worldwide.
During the meet, Al Hashemy stressed how the UAE has dispatched over 2,200 tonnes of medical supplies to more than 135 countries, particularly throughout Africa and Asia, till date.
She added that the UAE has utilised its advanced logistical capabilities and transportation facilities and services to help expedite the delivery of COVID-19 vaccines around the world, including through storage and handling facilities in Abu Dhabi and Dubai, in close cooperation with Etihad Airways and Emirates Airlines, thereby geographically covering nearly 3.6 billion people around the world.
Furthermore, the UAE has supported the establishment of fully-equipped field hospitals (Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Field Hospitals) in Jordan, Guinea-Conakry, Sudan, Sierra Leone, Lebanon, and most recently in Mauritania.
She also highlighted the Hope Consortium initiative, which has provided nearly 65 million vaccine doses to 40 countries since its launch by Abu Dhabi in 2020.
Al Hashemy also referred to the recent collaboration with China to host the first COVID-19 vaccine production project in the UAE “Hayat Vax”.