Japan, South Korea pledge $57 mln for ASEAN Covid-19, disease response

By Vu Anh   November 12, 2020 | 07:11 pm PT
Japan, South Korea pledge $57 mln for ASEAN Covid-19, disease response
A medical worker handles Covid-19 blood samples in Hanoi, July 30, 2020. Photo by VnExpress/Tat Dinh.
Japan and South Korea pledged $57 million to ASEAN for Covid-19 and disease response at the 37th ASEAN Summit held online on Thursday.

Japan said it would provide $50 million to create the ASEAN Center for Public Health Emergencies and Emerging Diseases (AC-PHEED) and $1 million for the bloc’s Covid-19 response fund at the 23rd ASEAN-Japan Summit.

Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc announced the formation of AC-PHEED at the meeting, adding it would help enhance medical and coordination capabilities of individual countries and the bloc in case of disease outbreaks.

Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga hailed the setting up of AC-PHEED and promised assistance to make it operational.

South Korea said it would provide $1 million to the bloc's response fund and $5 million worth of medical equipment to help the ASEAN members fight and recover from Covid-19.

At the 21st ASEAN-South Korea Summit its president, Moon Jae-in, said his country is willing to work with ASEAN to overcome the challenges posed by Covid-19.

ASEAN requested continued support for disease prevention initiatives like the ASEAN Regional Reserve of Medical Supplies.

The two sides also agreed to cooperate in the fight against the Covid-19 pandemic, especially focusing on developing an effective vaccine and making sure people could have access to it.

The two summits were held on sidelines of the 37th ASEAN Summit being hosted by Vietnam from November 12 to November 15.

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