France to devote 1.2bn euros to fight Covid-19 in Africa

On Wednesday [8 April], French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian announced that France will provide “nearly 1.2 billion euros” in aid to fight the spread of Covid-19 in Africa.

“At the bilateral level, we will participate in this effort by redirecting a substantial part of our development assistance to health and food issues in the amount of nearly 1.2 billion euros,” he told the Foreign Affairs Committee of the [French] National Assembly.

“The needs are enormous,” he stressed, according to the transcript of his speech, in which he called for strengthening “healthcare systems” in Africa as well as “its testing capabilities and scientific research by supporting African researchers.” It is also necessary to “provide a substantial financial effort,” insisted France’s top diplomat, who called on the G7 and the G20 to work in that direction.