Australia accelerates delivery of 500,000 covid-19 vaccine doses to Timor-Leste and Fiji

  • Joint media release with:
  • Senator the Hon Zed Seselja, Minister for International Development and the Pacific
11 August 2021

Australia is supplying 500,000 COVID-19 vaccine doses to Timor-Leste and Fiji this week, as part of an expanded program of vaccine deliveries to support our neighbours’ responses to outbreaks in their countries.

These deliveries take the total vaccines shared so far to more than 1.6 million doses to the Pacific and Timor Leste, with a number of further deliveries planned for the coming weeks.

Today, 300,000 doses arrived in Dili. Australia has now shared over 575,000 doses with Timor-Leste, where 42 per cent of the adult population has received at least a first dose.

These vaccines, complemented by Australian technical assistance, will boost Timor-Leste’s national vaccination rollout across all 13 municipalities, including remote and hard-to-reach areas.

Australia’s partnership with Timor-Leste in responding to COVID-19 extends beyond vaccine doses. The deployment of an Australian Medical Assistance Team (AUSMAT) has supported the country’s capacity to deal with up to 1,000 moderate, severe and critical cases at isolation facilities across Dili. In addition, Australia has assisted with the establishment of COVID-19 testing capacity at the National Health Laboratory, training of over 1,600 frontline health workers, and delivery of critical medical supplies, including oxygen, PPE and medical equipment.

Fiji is also receiving an additional 200,000 vaccine doses this week, totalling 861,000 doses shared. This is significant progress towards Australia’s commitment of 1 million vaccine doses delivered to the country this year. The Fiji Ministry of Health and Medical Services has already administered first doses for 87 per cent of the eligible population, with over 30 per cent fully vaccinated as of August 8.

A third Australian Medical Assistance Team (AUSMAT), consisting of 11 health professionals, arrived in Fiji last week to continue the partnership with the Fijian health system in their response to the COVID-19 surge.

These deliveries are a significant step towards delivering on Australia’s commitment to share up to 15 million doses with the Pacific and Timor-Leste by mid-2022 to support health and economic recovery.

This contribution is in addition to our $130 million commitment to the global COVAX Advance Market Commitment, and Australia’s UNICEF procurement deal.

Vaccines are one of the most effective ways to combat the virus and protect the health and security of our region.

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