President Cyril Ramaphosa says the African continent needs the support of developed economies to counter the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Speaking at the Qatar Economic Forum on Monday, the President said while the continent has been growing in leaps and bounds, it needed this support to ensure African countries are able to get out of the economic slump brought on by COVID-19.
He reiterated the call for a waiver of COVID-19 vaccine intellectual property provisions, as there is a need for mass production of the jabs to save lives.
“We are facing an emergency that is affecting the entire world… We are going to continue insisting that there should be a waiver,” he said.
President Ramaphosa said meanwhile that the vaccination roll out in South Africa is on course, despite some delays.
“We are pleased that Johnson & Johnson have agreed to replace the two million vaccines that we would have received and our vaccination process will get back on track, hopefully will get a lot more faster,” President Ramaphosa said.
The Johnson & Johnson vaccine has a number of advantages for South Africa, including that it is a one shot jab, while others are two doses.
“That is preferable for us, particularly because a number of our people are in the rural areas and they have to be reached and it is better if they are reached once rather than twice,” President Ramaphosa said.
The Qatar Economic Forum, being held under the theme “Reimagining the World”, aims to prepare plans that support the growth of the global economy during the post-pandemic phase and to benefit from the strategic location of the State of Qatar.
Qatar is an important point of connection between the East, the West and Africa regions.
President Ramaphosa participated at the invitation of the Emir of the State of Qatar, His Highness Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al-Thani.–SAnews