International public opinion has welcomed and highly valued Vietnam’s initiative to set up a national vaccine fund, which is part of the country’s efforts to effectively respond to the COVID-19 pandemic.
|Vietnam’s COVID-19 response initiative lauded. - Illustrative image - Photo: VNA|
The fund was officially inaugurated on June 5, with an aim of mobilising social resources so as to facilitate the purchase and importation of vaccines as well as the research and production of homegrown ones.
Nikkei Asia has recently reported that the establishment of the fund plays a role in financing the vaccination drive, a crucial weapon in the country's battle against pandemic and to protect manufacturing supply chains, which are a key economic engine for Vietnam.
According to Nikkei Asia, European businesses said they are also keen to contribute to the fund.
It quoted Alain Cany, chairman of the European Chamber of Commerce (EuroCham) in Vietnam, as saying “this is a very positive move, not just for European business but for Vietnam as a whole".
Meanwhile, Mary Tarnowka, executive director of the American Chamber of Commerce in Vietnam (AmCham Vietnam), said that many members of AmCham Vietnam have indicated willingness to help pay the cost of vaccinating their employees.
Representatives of international organisations in Vietnam have also lauded the initiative.
Dr Kidong Park, WHO Representative in Vietnam, said the mobilisation to improve access to COVID-19 vaccine of the Vietnamese Government is carried out in a timely manner and in line with the global vaccine initiative.
The Government manages and equitably uses donations from individuals and private firms, and this is hoped to result in new values for the strategy to fight the ravaging pandemic, he added.
Meanwhile, UN Resident Coordinator in Vietnam Kamal Malhotra affirmed that the initiative has received support from the UN over the months.
Ambassador Giorgio Aliberti, head of the European Union Delegation to Vietnam, said the establishment of the vaccine fund has a significant role to play in Vietnam’s strategy in battling COVID-19.
For her part, UNDP Resident Representative in Vietnam Caitlin Wiesen expressed her belief that people from all walks of life, especially businesses will respond to the Government’s call and make contributions to the newly-established fund.
Through donations to the fund, Vietnamese communities in Laos, Cambodia, Russia, Switzerland, Germany, Australia and Egypt have showed their solidarity and responsibility in sharing difficulties faced by people in the homeland in the fight against the pandemic.
Vietnam is projected to need 150 million doses of vaccine to inoculate about 75 million people at an estimated cost of 25.2 trillion VND.