KHARTOUM, June 29, 2021—The Government of Sudan and the World Bank signed a grant agreement of $100 million to boost the country’s COVID-19 response and expand vaccination coverage in the country. This is the first grant from the International Development Association (IDA) following the arrears clearance on March 25, 2021, and nearly 30 years of disengagement with IDA.
“We are extremely delighted to partner with the World Bank Group (WBG) in this very important project. We are confident that with this additional financing in place, we will be able to boost our COVID-19 response including expanding vaccination coverage. Nonetheless, this will feed into pandemic preparedness aspects as well, as we plan to address some of the most outstanding system gaps. We value our strategic partnership with the WBG as we look forward to further strengthen and revive our health system,” said Omer Elnagieb, Sudan’s Minister of Health.
Since the beginning of the pandemic, the Government of Sudan has been working hard to improve prevention activities, rapid detection, and deploy COVID-19 (coronavirus) vaccination in the country. However, the pandemic continues to severely impact the country’s economy and people. The additional $100 million IDA financing, which comes after a $21.99 million grant provided by donors in September 2020, will help the country scale up activities implemented under the first phase of the Sudan COVID-19 Emergency Response Project and accelerate vaccine deployment in the country.
“We are very happy to boost our support in this area. By providing vaccines, this project will especially be beneficial to preventing COVID-19 related deaths and reducing transmission among the population. It will also help Sudan to fast-track economic and social recovery,” said Ousmane Dione, World Bank Country Director for Eritrea, Ethiopia, South Sudan, and Sudan.
The additional financing will enable Sudan to obtain COVID-19 vaccines from a variety of suppliers to attain its target of vaccinating 25 percent of its population in a way that guarantees value-for-money. The project will also allow for an equitable and effective distribution of COVID-19 vaccines in line with Sudan’s National Vaccine Deployment Plan.
“This project will provide a critical boost to Sudan’s vaccination efforts across the country and will allow more than 10 million people to receive Covid-19 vaccines. It will also provide training to health workers to support vaccine deployment across the country,” said Milena Stefanova, World Bank Country Manager for Sudan.
World Bank Group COVID-19 Response.
Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, the World Bank Group has committed over $125 billion to fight the health, economic, and social impacts of the pandemic, the fastest and largest crisis response in its history. The financing is helping more than 100 countries strengthen pandemic preparedness, protect the poor and jobs, and jump start a climate-friendly recovery. The Bank is also providing $12 billion to help low- and middle-income countries purchase and distribute COVID-19 vaccines, tests, and treatments.