Chinese officials called out on the international community to increase its assistance in COVID-19 vaccine distribution in Africa.
"Unlike some countries that have said they have to wait for their own people to finish vaccination before they could supply the vaccines to foreign countries, we believe that it is, of course, necessary to ensure that the Chinese people get vaccinated as soon as possible, but for other countries in need, we also try our best to provide vaccine help," said Wu Peng, Director General of the Africa Department at the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Wu Peng also stressed that it was crucial to start the manufacturing of Covid 19 vaccines on the African continent.
"Aid alone cannot solve the vaccine issue of Africa," he said.
"We must support the local manufacturing of the vaccines in Africa. Frankly speaking, this is difficult due to the industrialization levels. However, in countries like Egypt and South Africa, there are industrial bases for it."
"In Egypt we will start with the packing of the Chinese vaccine, which will promote the global vaccine supply capability," the Director General of the Africa Department at the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs said.
This promise comes just one day after the pledge made at the end of the Summit on Financing African economies that was hosted by France in Paris, where heads of state they promised to lift patents, to allow Africa to produce its own vaccines.
Wu Peng said that China has been donating and selling vaccines to nearly 40 African countries.
Egypt, who previously received several shipments of Sinovac vaccines from China, will start locally producing China's COVID-19 vaccine in June, with Sinovac enabling the Egyptian side to obtain the expertise and technical assistance to produce the vaccine, giving the license to manufacture and pack the vaccine in Egypt.