Covid19 pandemic highlighted the lack of manufacturing medical products capacity in Africa and dependence on international imports and donations.
To address the challenge of equitable access to Covid19 vaccines, the African Union has launched several initiatives and announced the goal to produce locally 60% of the Africa’s vaccine requirements by 2040. At this momentum, operationalization of the African Medicines Agency will also be a game changer that will contribute to ensure a sustainable development of local manufacturing.
The AFD Group, as part of a larger Team Europe effort, is contributing to this AU ambition to build reliant pharmaceutical systems. This includes supporting manufacturing capacities as well as human capital skills set and strengthening the regulatory framework.
The discussion was centred around the transfer of technology, expertise building, strong regulation and focus on localisation as essential components to developing Africa’s medical manufacturing capacity. Development should be sustainable to ensure Africa is ready for, and resilient to, the next global pandemic. Knowledge and IP transfer from large pharmaceutical companies is necessary for the local manufacturing of vaccines. Education in terms of medical training - but also at community level - will build medical sovereignty. Long-term European partnerships will be vital in terms of providing financing and transferring skills.