UAE underscores commitment to fight against COVID-19 in Global Pledging Conference

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Mohamed Nass - - The United Arab Emirates Monday participated in a global pledging conference alongside numerous countries and international organizations committed to strengthening global cooperation in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.

Hosted virtually Monday by Ursula von der Leyen, President of the European Commission; the Global Preparedness Monitoring Board; the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI); Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance; the Wellcome Trust; and the Gates Foundation, the pledging event set out to raise more than AED30 billion (over Euro7.5 bn) to increase testing, expand treatment, and invest in vaccine development to curb the spread of COVID-19.

UAE participation was headed by Reem bint Ibrahim Al Hashemy, Minister of State for International Cooperation.

In her opening statement, Al Hashemy remarked: "The UAE is already an urgent, dedicated, and responsible actor in the fight against COVID-19 and will continue to work tirelessly at the forefront of the global response to this malicious and relentless threat."

She noted the UAE’s ongoing cooperation with international organizations, stating, "We have airlifted more than 472 tonnes of medical aid, personal protective equipment, and supplies to 43 countries around the world, and our World Health Organization hub in Dubai’s International Humanitarian City has processed more than 132 shipments and acted as the primary distribution point of PPE for the organization. Thus far, US$110 million has been allocated and dispatched."

Discussing the UAE leadership’s efforts to protect citizens and residents from the pandemic, Al Hashemy referenced the state’s extensive contact tracing and testing programs, which have completed more than 1.2 million COVID-19 tests to date. She also noted the recent announcement of a breakthrough treatment at Abu Dhabi Stem Cells Center, which received a patent for an innovative treatment for COVID-19 patients that further advances the UAE’s contributions to international research and development initiatives aiming to reduce the virus’ impact worldwide.

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