The European Commission is working around the clock to support EU Member States and strengthen international efforts to slow the spread of COVID-19. In addition, not only does the EU bring support to the Member states, but also co-finances the delivery of more protective equipment to China.
With more than 2,600 lives lost already and the epidemics affecting already 28 countries worldwide, the spread of COVID-19 demands our full attention. This is the time for us to act as a Union.
Support to Member States
Following the developments in Italy, the Commission is stepping up its support to Member States in the context of the on-going work on preparedness, contingency and response planning.
New EU €232 million funding will help detect and diagnose the disease, care for infected people and prevent further transmission at this critical time.
- €114 million will support the World Health Organization (WHO), in particular the global preparedness and response global plan. This intends to boost public health emergency preparedness and response work in countries with weak health systems and limited resilience. Part of this funding is subject to the agreement of the EU budgetary authorities.
- €15 million are planned to be allocated in Africa, including to the Institute Pasteur Dakar, Senegal to support measures such as rapid diagnosis and epidemiological surveillance.
- €100 million will go to urgently needed research related to diagnostics, therapeutics and prevention, including €90 million through the Innovative Medicines Initiative, a partnership between the EU and the pharmaceutical industry.
- €3 million allocated to the EU Civil Protection Mechanism for repatriation flights of EU citizens from Wuhan, China.
EU support to China
The Commission is co-financing the delivery of more than 25 tonnes of personal protective equipment to China after the EU Civil Protection Mechanism was activated.
An Austrian aircraft departed from Vienna with the protective equipment which includes masks, gloves, protective clothing and disinfectant. This comes in addition to over 30 tonnes of protective equipment mobilised by EU Member States and already delivered to China earlier this month via the EU Civil Protection Mechanism.
The European Commission is in regular contact with Member States, the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control and the World Health Organisation on all aspects of the COVID-19 outbreak.