I thank the Saudi Presidency and G20 leaders for the opportunity to contribute on behalf of the African Union Development Agency (AUDA-NEPAD).

I also thank President Macron and Chancellor Merkel and other G20 leaders for joining with African Union Chairperson President Ramaphosa to give Africa a special place in the G20 coronavirus response.

I wish to express my condolences for the enormous loss of life suffered by many G20 countries. We have seen and appreciate the effective response in several countries. This gives us hope that coronavirus will be contained and defeated sooner rather than later.

At this moment of unprecedented global crisis for all of us, we appreciate that Africa has been singled out in the statement.

More fiscal space will allow African countries to devote additional domestic resources to fighting the virus, while also mitigating its economic and social consequences, as we build stronger public health systems. The United Nations Economic Commission for Africa estimates that this will require $100 billion or more.

We have to end this pandemic everywhere or else it will remain a threat to everyone.

It is important for coordination that G20 action work through multilateral institutions, particularly WHO, the World Bank, and IMF.

I will not miss the opportunity to commend Dr Tedros and the WHO for exemplary leadership during this crisis. I also commend the good work of the Global Fund, which should be called upon to quickly respond to this challenge with an expanded mandate and new resources.

Philanthropy and the private sector have developed many innovative technologies, which we must make full use of. We applaud the G20’s focus on vaccine science and research.

Similarly, the world cannot afford to restrict the export of medicines, protective equipment, and test kits. These must be available everywhere on an equal basis.

Let’s work together to end the COVID-19 pandemic and build resilient health systems to keep our people safe in the future.

I thank you.