Coronavirus: International Cooperation

Department for International Development written question – answered on 25th March 2020.

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Photo of Andrew Rosindell Andrew Rosindell Conservative, Romford

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what assessment he has made of the potential merits on increasing the level of support provided to (a) the World Health Organization and (b) other international organisations to help limit the spread of covid-19.

Photo of James Cleverly James Cleverly Minister of State (Foreign and Commonwealth Office) (Joint with the Department for International Development)

The Department for International Development (DFID) is supporting the UK’s global efforts to combat the outbreak of COVID-19 and help the most vulnerable. UK aid will reduce the risk of the spread of the disease by supporting developing countries most at risk of coronavirus to quickly identify cases and care for patients. This support demonstrates how UK aid is making the world a safer place by tackling diseases that do not respect borders.

The UK has committed up to £241 million of aid to support the global efforts to combat the outbreak of COVID-19. In addition to the UK’s significant annual funding to the World Health Organization (WHO) of around £120 million, the UK has committed an additional £10 million to the WHO’s Emergency Flash Appeal and additional funding for other international partners who are helping developing countries develop and deliver their own response to the virus. This includes funding for research and development of vaccines, diagnostics and treatments, medical and humanitarian expertise and supplies and a package of support to help developing countries respond to the economic impacts of the virus.

By reducing the global impact of the virus and preventing its spread, this support is firmly in the UK national interest, protecting both the UK public and the stability of the UK economy.

UK aid has a longstanding record of supporting countries across the globe to prepare for large disease outbreaks. We are working closely with our international partners, including the WHO, to support vulnerable countries ensuring they are better prepared. We are keeping further international funding under regular review.

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