COTE D’IVOIRE – Ivory Coast has begun sending mobile clinics to markets and other busy areas in its main city Abidjan in an effort to reinforce the vaccination campaign against COVID-19.

After administering fewer than 800,000 doses since vaccinations began in March – enough for a single dose for just 3% of the population – Ivorian health authorities are now aiming to inoculate a million people in Abidjan over the next 10 days.

The country has so far recorded 48,580 coronavirus cases, 47,970 recoveries and 315 fatalities.

Like many African countries, Ivory Coast has seen vaccinations get off to a slow start due to limited supplies as well as wariness or indifference toward the vaccines.

However, officials say things are picking up thanks to better communication, including promotions at soccer matches.

Ivory Coast has received about a million doses of the AstraZeneca (AZN.L), Pfizer (PFE.N) and Sinopharm vaccines to date, and the government says it expects to take delivery of 1.2 million more doses by mid-July.

The West African country is set to host World Bank and African leaders to highlight the importance of an ambitious and robust 20th replenishment of the International Development Association (IDA20).

The International Development Association (IDA) is one of the largest sources of funding for fighting extreme poverty in the world’s lowest income countries.

Since 1960, as an institution of the World Bank Group, IDA has provided about US$422 billion for investments in 114 countries.

The replenishment will support a resilient recovery from the COVID-19 crisis and help the continent continue its economic transformation.

As African countries grapple with the devastating impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, continued support from the World Bank, particularly from IDA, is critical to help them meet their financing needs, which were already high before the pandemic. 

This high-level meeting follows the call from African leaders, during the African economies financing Summit in Paris last May, asking for increased support to build back better and greener from the crisis.

The discussions will help identify key priorities for financing in Africa, and champion a strong policy and financing package for an ambitious IDA20 replenishment.

Africa is IDA’s biggest beneficiary with 39 countries and has made significant headway in improving development indicators in the six decades partnership with the World Bank.