Note

June 09, 21 - 8:25 am - Reuters

Ecuador secures $550 million by various multilateral organizations to finance COVID-19 vaccines

Ecuador has secured $550 million in financing to carry out its coronavirus vaccination, an essential step to begin reviving its pandemic-hit economy, economy minister Simon Cueva said.

President Guillermo Lasso, who took office on May 24, has pledged to vaccinate nine million of Ecuador’s population of 17.5 million in the first 100 days of his government, and is seeking to accelerate negotiations to buy more vaccine doses.

“We already have $550 million assured,” Cueva told. “We want to revitalize the economy, and the first measure to do this is the ongoing mass vaccination plan.”

Cueva said the financing was being provided by various multilateral organizations, without giving more detail.

The government expects to finish negotiations for vaccine purchases from China and Russia in the coming weeks.

Ecuador’s economy was already struggling when the pandemic broke out, leading it to seek a $6.5 billion financing agreement with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) last year.

Cueva said the government remains in contact with the IMF to seek a “revision of goals,” and that officials are pursuing other financing opportunities with multilateral organizations.