The World Trade Organization (WTO) Director-General Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala has said South Africa, Senegal and Rwanda, with Nigeria were being considered as regional vaccine manufacturing hubs.
The WTO official said Africa is working with the European Union (EU) and other partners on the matter. Okonjo-Iweala said on Monday during a virtual meeting:
_We have now seen that over-centralization of vaccine production capacity is incompatible with equitable access in a crisis situation._
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_Regional production hubs, in tandem with open supply chains, offer a more promising path to preparedness for future health crisis._
This comes after numerous calls for Africa to unite and start manufacturing vaccines for various ailments on their own to avoid being last in receiving life-saving vaccines.
Calls for vaccine manufacturing hubs intensified following the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic which came with conspiracy theories including that developed countries wanted to wipe out the African race through vaccines they develop “under the guise of providing vaccines for the pandemic.”
Observers say Africa has the human resources and can use its natural resources to fund such initiative if there is unity among member states.
Global giants in the medical field including Pfizer have members from Africa and Zimbabwe in particular which signifies that Africa is endowed with the human resources that can get the job done.