Speaking at the receiving ceremony, Deputy Minister To Anh Dung thanked the Government and people of France and Italy for their highly appreciated, valuable and timely support, which he said made practical contributions to the prevention of COVID-19 in Vietnam. “This is a testament to the dynamic development of the strategic partnership between Vietnam, France and Italy over the years, as well as the friendship and solidarity in sharing difficulties and overcoming the pandemic,” he said.

At the receiving ceremony (Photo: VOV)

The Deputy Minister highly appreciated the initiative to establish the COVAX Facility to ensure fair and equal access to the COVID-19 vaccine globally. Italy and France are two of the EU's top donors to the COVAX mechanism. The two countries are also important trade partners of Vietnam and development partners of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). He also expressed his belief that the valuable contributions of Italy and France to Vietnam and ASEAN countries would contribute to creating favorable travel conditions for businesses and people.

On behalf of the COVAX Facility, Dr Kidong Park, Representative of the World Health Organisation (WHO) in Vietnam, thanked France and Italy for their contributions to Vietnam. Vietnam has so far received more than 11.7 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines through COVAX.

French Ambassador to Vietnam Nicolas Warnery said that France's decision to allocate 672,000 doses of vaccines to Vietnam shows solidarity and mutual support in difficult times, and the successful long-term cooperation relationship between the two countries in healthcare. In addition to financial contributions to the COVAX Facility, the French Government is committed to sharing 60 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine in 2021 with the aim of promoting vaccination globally.

On behalf of the Italian Government, Chargé d'Affaires of the Italian Embassy in Vietnam Paolo Epifani highly appreciated Vietnam's disease control efforts and expressed his pleasure to contribute 812,060 doses of COVID-19 vaccine to the vaccination campaign in Vietnam.

So far, Italy and France are the two EU member countries that have donated the largest amount of COVID-19 vaccine to Vietnam./.

Compiled by BTA