China is aiming to cultivate goodwill through so-called vaccine diplomacy

China to donate 100,000 Covid-19 vaccine doses to Congo Republic

The doses are enough to vaccinate 50,000 of Congo's 5.1 million people.
The doses are enough to vaccinate 50,000 of Congo's 5.1 million people.
Image: 123RF/LUIS CARCELLER

China will donate 100,000 doses of Covid-19 vaccine to Congo Republic and forgive R194,35mln ($13 mln) in public debt, its ambassador to the Central African country said on Thursday.

Ambassador Ma Fulin announced the measures after a meeting with Congo President Denis Sassou Nguesso. He did not say which Chinese-developed vaccine would be provided.

The doses are enough to vaccinate 50,000 of Congo's 5.1 million people. Congo, which has recorded 8,060 infections and 122 coronavirus-related deaths, has been allocated 420,000 doses of the AstraZeneca-Oxford vaccine for the first half of this year under the global COVAX vaccine-sharing facility.

As lower income countries struggle to obtain doses, China is aiming to cultivate goodwill through so-called vaccine diplomacy. It said on Monday that it was providing vaccine aid to 13 countries globally and planned to help a further 38.

Ma said the Chinese government would also forgive all public Congolese debt that came due before the end of 2020, an estimated R194,35mln ($13 mln). China offered similar relief to neighbouring Democratic Republic of Congo last month.

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