Islamabad October 07, 2021: The Federal Minister for Economic Affairs, Mr. Omar Ayub Khan, chaired a meeting on additional financing for procuring COVID-19 vaccines. Dr. Faisal Sultan (SAPM on Health), Mr. Yong Ye, Country Director, Asian Development Bank (ADB), Mr. Noor Ahmed, Executive Director to ADB, Mian Asad Hayaud Din, Secretary EAD and senior officers from NDMA, the Ministry of National Health Services, the Ministry of Finance and ADB attended the meeting.
The meeting discussed additional financing options by the Bank to the Government under ADB’s “Asia Pacific Vaccine Access Facility,” for vaccinating the remaining population of Pakistan against the COVID-19 pandemic. In the meeting, Mr. Omar Ayub Khan highlighted WHO’s recognition of the Government of Pakistan’s efforts in combating against the COVID-19 pandemic, and rapidly vaccinating a large section of the population.
The Country Director, ADB, reiterated the Bank’s commitment to support the Government’s vaccination drive against COVID-19. It was highlighted that out of the initial USD 500 million provided by the Asian Development Bank (ADB) in August 2021, USD 409 million had already been utilized for the procurement of vaccines.
The Federal Minister stated, “I firmly believe that ADB will also ensure the provision of additional financing to enable the Government to carry on its vaccination drive against the COVID-19 pandemic unencumbered.” During the meeting, Mr. Omer Ayub Khan also appreciated the tireless efforts of EAD colleagues and Ministry of Foreign Affairs in assisting the evacuation of ADB and World Bank personnel from Kabul, Afghanistan.
The Federal Minister for Economic Affairs directed EAD, NDMA, the Ministry of Health, the Ministry of Finance and the Asian Development Bank (ADB) to continue discussions on the scope of additional financing required and any associated operational-level matters for early processing of funds to procure COVID-19 vaccines.