Ghana to invest $25 million for local COVID-19 vaccine production

Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, Ghana's president, speaks during a news conference on day three of the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, Switzerland, on Thursday, Jan. 23, 2020. World leaders, influential executives, bankers and policy makers attend the 50th annual meeting of the World Economic Forum in Davos from Jan. 21 - 24. Photographer: Gem Atkinson/Bloomberg via Getty Images

The government of Ghana has committed a seed funding of $25 million for the local production of COVID-19 vaccines, President Nana Akufo-Addo has said.

In his address to the nation late Sunday on measures taken against the spread of the virus, the president said local production of the vaccine became necessary following a global shortage in recent times.

“The global shortage of vaccines means that we must develop our capacity to produce our own vaccines domestically and reduce our dependence on foreign supplies,” the president said. “We must be self-sufficient in this regard… and prepare ourselves better to deal with any such occurrences in the future.”

Ghana plans to establish a national vaccine institute, whose mandates will include establishing local vaccine manufacturing plants, deepening research and development for vaccines, Akufo-Addo said.

He urged the Ghanaian public to continue adhering to the safety protocols such as wearing masks and using sanitizers to contain the spread of the virus.