The World Bank has approved a loan of $474.4 million to help South Africa purchase COVID-19 vaccines.
A joint statement from the bank and South Africa’s National Treasury says the project will retroactively finance the procurement of 47 million COVID-19 vaccine doses by the Government of South Africa.
The loan is part of government efforts to cut debt-service costs by using cheaper funding sources in its response to the pandemic, Ismail Momoniat, acting director-general of the Treasury said.
South Africa has recorded the most coronavirus cases and deaths on the African continent, with over 3.9 million confirmed cases and more than 101,000 deaths. It initially struggled to secure vaccines due to limited supplies and protracted negotiations.