Shipping COVID-19 vaccines to Africa is not just a moral duty but it is also in Europe and the world's interest in order to prevent the resurgence of new virus variants, French President Emmanuel Macron said in Rwanda.
Macron said France was on track to deliver 30 million COVID-19 vaccination doses to Africa by year-end, that Germany would also deliver 30 million doses and that collectively the European Union would deliver more than 100 million doses to Africa this year.
"To help Africa get vaccinated ... is first of all a duty of solidarity, and it's also quite simply ...in the interest of all European countries, all the countries in the world," said Macron during a visit to a vaccination centre in Kigali on the sidelines of a state visit.
He said that if all countries did not get vaccinations, the virus will continue to spread and develop new variants which then in turn may reappear in countries that have already vaccinated their populations.
"Therefore this strategy is not just a moral duty, but a health requirement," Macron said.
The COVAX facility, backed by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization (GAVI), aims to secure 2 billion vaccine doses for lower-income countries by the end of 2021.