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Africa : the African Union intends to meet more than 60% of vaccine needs by 2040

Africa accounts for only 3% of global drug manufacturing. With the implementation of the African Medicines Agency, the continent is expected to make significant progress in regulating pharmaceutical products and improving access to quality medicines. The objective of the African Union is to meet more than 60% of the continent’s vaccine needs by 2040.

With the launch in 2019 by the African Union of the African Medicines Agency to ensure greater access to effective healthcare in Africa, the continent is expected to make notable progress in the regulation of pharmaceuticals and in improving access to quality medicines. According to African governments, it is urgent to strengthen, above all, the local production of vaccines, in order to respond effectively to the needs of the population.

One of the most important developments since our last meeting is the entry into force of the new African Medicines Agency. It is essential to maintain the momentum and fully establish this agency, without which Africa cannot independently authorise and regulate medicines and vaccines. Producing vaccines on our continent is also an opportunity for trade and investment.

Paul Kagame, President of the Republic of Rwanda

In 2020, Africa accounted for only 1.1% of the global pharmaceutical market. Drug manufacturers on the continent are only about 375 in number, and are mostly located in the north, according to the WHO. The entry into force of the African Medicines Agency is expected to redress this situation, in a continent that accounts for only 3% of global drug manufacturing.

If we want to be in good health, we have to think about producing our own medicines. This is why the African Medicines Agency is beneficial and the current discussions with Africa CDC will give more power to this body of the African Union to allow us to go in the direction of effectively treating our populations.

Cessouma Minata Samate, African Union Commissioner for Health, Humanitarian Affairs and Social Development

Several African countries like Ghana, Egypt, Algeria and South Africa are currently engaged in the production of vaccines to meet the needs of their populations and also for export purposes. Through the African Medicines Agency, Africa intends to strengthen vaccine manufacturing in order to meet more than 60% of the continent’s needs by 2040.

We are busy working under the Partnerships for African Vaccine Manufacturing to also create such centers to support medicine regulatory systems strengthening, especially now that the continent is moving into facilitating the production of vaccines to attain 60% of the continental needs by 2040.

Margareth Ndomondo-Sigonda, Head of the African Medicines Regulatory Harmonization – AUDA-NEPAD

According to health experts, pharmaceutical expenditure in Africa is expected to reach 30 billion dollars by the end of 2022 and the value of the African pharmaceutical industry will be worth 56 billion dollars in 2030.

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