President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey has announced that Turkey will send 15 million Covid-19 vaccine doses to Africa.
Erdogan said this on Saturday at a major summit of the continent’s leaders, adding that Ankara has invested heavily in developing trade and diplomatic ties with the world’s poorest continent.
Speaking to dozens of attending leaders and ministers, Erdogan said Turkey would ship 15 million Covid-19 vaccine doses to Africa, where cases are rapidly rising and vaccination rates are low, as gathered by Punch.
“We are aware of the global injustice in accessing the Covid-19 vaccine and Africa’s unjust treatment,” Erdogan said.
“It is disgraceful for humanity that only six percent of Africa’s population has been vaccinated.”
The country is developing its own vaccine, known as Turkovac, which is in the process of receiving emergency use approval, said Erdogan.
“In order to contribute to the resolution of this issue, within our means, we plan to share 15 million vaccine doses in the period ahead,” he said.
“The real potential between us goes far beyond the targets we have,” he said.
In a final declaration, Turkey and African countries agreed to strengthen cooperation in several fields, including health “through further health sector investments”.
“With the declaration we have accepted at this summit and the joint action plan, we agreed on a road map to deepen our relations,” Erdogan told a closing media event.
Erdogan also held one-on-one meetings with African heads of state, including Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed and Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari, who have both expressed an interest in Turkey’s defence industry.