Rwanda, World Bank sign US$ 30 million financing to support COVID-19 vaccination rollout in Rwanda

On 23 April 2021 at 07:12

The Government of Rwanda and the World Bank have signed a US$ 30 million financing agreement (approximately Rwf 29 billion) to support COVID-19 Emergency Response program. The financing will enable affordable and equitable access to safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines in Rwanda.

Of the US$30 million, $15 million is a grant while $15 million is a credit to be repaid within 38 years.

The financing agreement was signed on Thursday 22nd April 2021 between Rwanda and the World Bank. Rwanda was represented by the Minister of Finance and Economic Planning, Dr. Uzziel Ndagijimana and World Bank Country Manager for Rwanda, Rolande Pryce.

The financing will enhance development effectiveness by addressing emerging needs, such as improving access to oxygen therapy, screening for underlying chronic conditions and protecting essential health services.

It will also bolster the capacity of the routine immunization system through investments in human resources, vaccine safety and monitoring as well as outreach activities and communications to sustain vaccine acceptance and uptake.

Minister Ndagijimana has said that the funds will help the Government of Rwanda to cover 60% targeted to be vaccinated by 2022.

“The Government of Rwanda has established integrated system to mitigate COVID-19 effects on the economy of livelihoods of Rwandans. We need to vaccinate at least 60% of the population to fully recover the economy and bring the situation to normal. The funding is a great contribution to achieve this goal,” he said.

This is the second additional financing for the Rwanda COVID-19 Emergency Response Project, bringing a total of $45.19 million in World Bank contributions to the country’s national COVID-19 health response and vaccination campaign.

Rolande Pryce has said that the World Bank is pleased to partner with the Government of Rwanda in COVID-19 vaccination rollout highlighting that it is the foundation for the Government’s program to save people’s lives and fully resume economic activities towards sustainable and inclusive development.

“Since the inception of the COVID-19 pandemic the Government of Rwanda has acted swiftly and decisively to save lives and mitigate the economic impact of the crisis with strong results on the ground. The World Bank is pleased to support the government, in collaboration with other development partners, to undertake one of the boldest public health campaigns of our times that aims to vaccinate 60 percent of the population by 2022,” she said.

“The vaccination program is a central piece of the government’s comprehensive plan to save lives and facilitate full reopening of the economy, putting the country back on a path towards more inclusive and sustainable growth. We are privileged to partner in this effort,” added Rolande Pryce.

Rwanda began countrywide vaccination program on 5th March 2021 after receiving 392, 000 vaccine doses through COVAX initiative and donation from India. Since then, over 349,000 people have been vaccinated.

The vaccines were rolled out starting from people whose lien of duties puts them at risks of catching Coronavirus including health workers, security personnel, and journalists as well as people with chronic diseases.

Rwanda was represented by the Minister of Finance and Economic Planning, Dr. Uzziel Ndagijimana and World Bank Country Manager for Rwanda, Rolande Pryce.