The UK Government has committed £330m annually over the next five years to Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, to support its work of immunising 300 million across the developing world, as well as its commitments to ensure a Covid-19 vaccine, once developed, will be available to all.

Secretary of State for International Development Anne-Marie Trevelyan noted: “The coronavirus pandemic shows us now more than ever the vital role vaccines play in protecting us all.

“By supporting Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, we are helping stop the spread of infectious diseases, saving millions of lives.

“As coronavirus vaccine trials begin, we need to make sure any successful vaccine will be available to everyone.”

Gavi CEO Dr Seth Berkley added: “This funding will not only protect hundreds of millions of children against disease, it will also help health systems to repair and rebuild after the enormous impact of Covid-19 has subsided. This is our best shield against future pandemics which, as we have seen all too clearly in recent months, do not respect borders.

“Finally, it means we can continue our work leading international efforts to ensure universal access to a Covid-19 vaccine, as well as to maintain the infrastructure needed to deploy it at scale around the world, which offers our best means of ending this crisis.”