Germany committed on a global scale to the fight against COVID-19 and ready to support Zambia.
German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas said: “The logic of the COVID19 pandemic tells us that we either prevail over the virus worldwide, or not at all. And our success will be determined not with us, but among the poorest of the poor. We have to pave the way for the fair global distribution of protective equipment, tests, medicines and vaccines. #COVID19 will not stop at national borders in the future, either.”
On the 4th of May, German Chancellor Angela Merkel announced on the global donor Conference that Germany will be participating with 525 million EUR at the Global Response Initiative and further gives 1.57 billion EUR for global health projects. The German Federal Foreign Office is making 300million euro available for Covid-19-related humanitarian assistance worldwide. Germany is thus making a substantial contribution in response to the global humanitarian appeals from the United Nations and the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement. The United Nation World Health Organization has a central and vital role to play in the direct endeavors to tackle the pandemic. Germany is among the most important donors and supporters and has increased the funding it is making available in light of the pandemic. These funds will make possible global relief measures in countries already facing a humanitarian crisis.
As longstanding partner and friend of Zambia, Germany stands ready to support Zambia in these difficult times with additional measures beyond the Global Response Initiative:
His Excellency, Ambassador Achim Burkart, said: “The global crisis requires global cooperation. That is why the German Government is committed to support the Zambian people to control the outbreak of the pandemic and to mitigate the economic and social consequences of the crisis. I have been impressed by the Zambian response and I thank the amazing health workers, the heroes of our time, which provide front-line care with highest personal commitment.
As part of Team Europe’s efforts Germany is today announcing a rapid response package with a total volume of 18.5 million euro or 370 million ZMW for Zambia.
Through this support and further planned support, Germany is committed to help Zambia control the outbreak and to mitigate the impact of the pandemic, especially on most vulnerable people focusing on four areas:
1) Expanding social protection measures through cash transfers for the most vulnerable
2) Support Zambia’s health system in combating the pandemic through procurement of health supplies such as protective equipment, essential medicines, testing and lab capacity
2) Ensure people have continued access to essential water and sanitation services critical for good hygiene and pandemic control
3) Supporting our current partners in stepping up prevention measures and behaviour change campaigns as well as in crisis management, particularly at the local level and in our partner institutions.
The contribution will support GRZ in the implementation of the Zambian Contingency Plan and will be implemented through German Development Cooperation organisations GIZ and KfW in partnership with the UNICEF.
The planned support follows on a request by the Minister of Finance to the German Embassy to scale up development cooperation in health and other sectors.
As part of this commitment, Germany stands ready to support social protection for the most vulnerable, especially in urban areas. A strong signal that the Government of the Republic of Zambia prioritizes social protection of the most vulnerable in their own spending will be important factor in the decision-making.
For Zambia’s fight with COVID-19 – including the German contribution – to be most effective we urge the Government of Zambia to:
1) Re-prioritize government expenditures to safeguard the needs of the poor and vulnerable parts of the population; uphold human rights and highest accountability standards in the response and step up anti-corruption measures
2) Actively address the debt crisis to prevent the breakdown of public finances through speeding up reforms and negotiations with the IMF
3) Take the necessary steps to make best use of existing and potential new multilateral support as well as the G20 debt suspension initiative.
CAPTION is a file picture from 2019.