Funding the Global Response
The ACT-Accelerator, the major global multi-lateral initiative coordinating pandemic response, has requested $16.8 billion in grant funding to support activities from October 2021 to September 2022. More than halfway through its budget year, ACT-A has raised less than $3 billion, a fraction of the funding needed to implement its strategy. At 18% funded, the vaccines pillar fares best ($1,050 million), while only $6.5 million has been allocated to the diagnostics pillar, less than 1% of the target funding. The persistent lack of funding may be indicative of waning support among wealthier countries for the “no one is safe until everyone is safe” approach.
In February, the ACT-Accelerator Facilitation Council’s Finance and Resource Mobilization Working Group, chaired by Norway, set out a “fair share” framework to set contribution benchmarks by country. The calculation of the fair share benchmarks is based on the size of national economies and likely gains from a faster recovery of the global economy and trade. No country has yet come close to their fair share ask for the 2021-2022 budget year.
At the Second Global COVID-19 Summit, more than $3 billion in new financial commitments were pledged, including about $2.7 from governments and about $700 million from the private sector. Of this new funding, $2.5 billion is dedicated toward COVID-19 response activities and $712 million toward a new pandemic preparedness and global health security financial intermediary fund (FIF) at the World Bank.