Saudi Arabia donating USD 500 million to fight COVID

Currently in the presidency of the G20, the Arab country is calling on nations, organizations and private sector players to help come up with USD 8 billion to help plug a funding gap in tackling coronavirus.

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São Paulo – In its status as G20 presiding country, Saudi Arabia is calling upon countries, organizations, charities and the private sector to help raise USD 8 billion to help plug the funding gap in the fight against COVID-19. The news was released this Thursday (16) by the G20 in Saudi Arabia, which is expected to host the G20 summit in the second half of the year.

Saudi Arabia has pledged USD 500 million to “relevant international organizations to support global efforts in combatting the COVID-19 pandemic.” The funds are expected to pay for emergency and preparedness response, developing and deploying new diagnostics, therapeutics and vaccines, fulfilling unmet needs for international surveillance and coordination, and ensuring sufficient supplies of protective equipment for health workers.

The pledge will be divided into USD 150 million to the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness and Innovation (CEPI), USD 150 million to The Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunizations (GAVI), and USD 200 million to other international and regional health organizations and programs. The Global Preparedness Monitoring Board (GPMB) estimates that the financial gap to address coronavirus is wider than USD 8 billion.

According to the G20, Saudi Arabia’s novel pledge is a response to the commitment it had made during last month’s Extraordinary G20 Leaders Summit, which Saudi king Salman Bin Abdulaziz Al Saud (pictured above) arranged and hosted. The countries vowed to step up to plate and provide coronavirus response cash.

The G20 comprises the world’s leading economies, including Brazil and Saudi Arabia. Member countries also include the United States, Japan, Germany, France, Russia, India, South Africa, Argentina and Canada.

Translated by Gabriel Pomerancblum

Bandar Algaloud/AFP

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