Jakarta (Indonesia Window) – The COVID-19 vaccination gap still exists even though the global vaccine supply is adequate, Indonesian Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi said at the COVAX Advance Market Commitment Engagement Group (AMC EG) meeting on Wednesday (June 8).
The FM made the statement along with the Canadian Minister for International Development and the Ethiopian Minister of Health, according to the Indonesian Ministry of Foreign Affairs in an official statement here on Thursday.
“The vaccine gap still exists. Many high-risk people in low-income countries have not received the vaccination. The vaccination rate does not balance the number of available vaccine doses,” Retno noted.
Globally, nearly 12 billion doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been injected, and the current supply of vaccines is sufficient to meet global vaccination needs.
She also reiterated President Joko Widodo’s statement at the COVAX AMC Summit in April 2022 regarding the importance of pushing vaccines into vaccinations immediately.
The minister emphasized that a renewed global focus is needed on two important things, namely giving priority to funding for vaccination efforts and integrating COVID-19 vaccination into other health interventions.
Furthermore, Retno said, COVAX has now become an inseparable part of the global health architecture.
The existence of COVAX is important for two reasons, namely maintaining multi-stakeholder solidarity at the global level and maintaining equal access to health solutions, especially for developing countries, she added.
“This is the fundamental reason why COVAX must continue to exist after 2022 and after the pandemic,” Retno said.
COVAX AMC is a global mechanism that aims to distribute vaccines free of charge to its member countries, with 92 lower-middle-income and low-income countries.
Overall, so far COVAX has delivered 1.5 billion doses of vaccines against Covid-19 to 144 countries, and 88 percent of them were delivered to 87 AMC nations.
Indonesia, as of April 3, 2022, has received 130.66 million doses of vaccines from the AMC COVAX mechanism and bilateral dose-sharing schemes.
Reporting by Indonesia Window