The Team Europe Initiative on Manufacturing and Access to Vaccines, Medicines and Health Technologies (‘MAV+’) works with African partners to strengthen their local pharmaceutical systems and manufacturing capacity.
MAV+ offers a comprehensive, 360-degree approach to tackle barriers on both supply and demand sides. It is creating an enabling environment for sustainable local manufacturing in Africa through 3 dimensions: the supply side, the demand side and the enabling environment.
The overall objective of the TEI is to facilitate access to quality, safe, effective and affordable health products as outlined in the UN’s Sustainable Development Goal target 3.8. Supporting access to essential health products and technologies is an opportunity to target several development objectives and geo-political priorities shared by both the EU and the African Union. It can stimulate growth and decent jobs, facilitate trade, diversify global value chains, create private sector engagement, and reinforce our health, scientific and diplomatic ties with partner countries, while advancing universal health coverage, and human development and public health objectives.
MAV+ was announced by European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen in May 2021 with an initial €1 billion backing from the EU budget and European development finance institutions such as the European Investment Bank (EIB). This amount will be further enhanced by contributions from EU Member States. It is in line with the EU’s Strategy with Africa and the Partnerships for African Vaccine Manufacturing (PAVM). The importance of the initiative, as well as the production of health products for Africa in Africa, was emphasised at the annual State of Union address in September 2022.
360˚ support in the short, medium and long term
MAV+ delivers an integrated and comprehensive support package tackling barriers to manufacturing and access to health products and technologies in Africa from all angles. It places the continent’s own actors and institutions at its heart.
On the supply side, together with the EIB and development banks, this TEI incentivises and de-risks investment into local pharmaceutical and biotech companies.
On the demand side, this TEI works with African leaders and partners to tackle the fragmentation of local markets and help consolidate demand, facilitate market integration and the use of locally produced goods.
Regarding the enabling environment, the initiative will address the threat of substandard and falsified products and boost confidence in local goods by strengthening regulatory frameworks. The newly established African Medicines Agency (AMA), whose treaty entered into force in November 2021, will be able to count on the European Medicines Agency (EMA) in this respect. The initiative also supports technology transfer, for example through multilateral initiatives, notably WHO’s mRNA technology transfer hub and their manufacturers.
These 3 key dimensions revolve around 6 work streams
- industrial development, supply chains and private sector
- market shaping, demand and trade facilitation
- regulatory strengthening
- technology transfer and intellectual property management
- access to finance
- R&D, higher education and skills
These work streams include national and regional level interventions.
- As of March 2023, Team Europe has a total planned allocation of €1.1 billion with around €980 million already approved and under implementation. This encompasses €663.80 million in loans and other financial instruments from European Development Financial Institutions (EDFIs) and €316 million in grants, budget support and blended finance.
- At continental level, EU funding has been channelled into regulatory strengthening and the establishment of the African Medicines Agency (AMA), the WHO’s mRNA technology transfer hub, and the Partnership for African Vaccine Manufacturing (PAVM), hosted by the Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (ACDC).
- At country level, the first EU support packages are contributing to the MADIBA project led by Institut Pasteur in Senegal and local production in South Africa, and are creating the right ecosystem for investments in Rwanda and Ghana. Several other projects are under assessment.
This Team Europe Initiative aligns with the EU pharmaceutical strategy. It benefits from synergies with other health initiatives, such as the Global Health EDCTP3 Joint Undertaking - a clinical trials partnerships designed to accelerate the development of new or improved health technologies.
It complements Team Europe’s support for the COVAX Manufacturing Task Force. Team Europe is the lead contributor to COVAX with close to €5 billion in cash and loans for the facility and over 472 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines shared by EU Member States.
- May 2021
The €1 billion Team Europe Initiative on Manufacturing and Access to Vaccines, Medicines and Health Technologies is announced at the Global Health Summit in Rome, Italy.
The European Commission and the EIB also announce the launch of a coordination platform for European development banks to facilitate investment in the health sector in Africa.
- July 2021
Launch of the MADIBA project in Senegal. The Republic of Senegal and Team Europe agree to build a vaccine manufacturing plant. The project aims to significantly increase Africa's vaccine production capacity and reduce its dependence on imports, which account for 99% of its vaccine needs.
- February 2022
Ahead of the AU-EU Summit, Team Europe and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation announce the mobilisation of more than €100 million euros over the next five years to support the recently established African Medicines Agency (AMA) and other African medicines regulatory initiatives at regional and national levels.
WHO announces the first technology recipients of the mRNA vaccine hub with strong support from African and European partners - see the statement from European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen.
- June 2022
An EU-Africa matchmaking event on vaccines, therapeutics and equipment takes place to help manufacturers find partners along the value chain and establish connections between European and African companies in the pharma, biotech and medtech industries.
Team Europe (France, Germany, Belgium and Lithuania, with the expertise of Greece, Sweden and Austria) strengthens the capacity of Rwanda Food and Drug Authority through Twinning cooperation with EU Member State agencies and critical lab equipment.
- March 2023
The Zambia-EU Pharmaceutical Manufacturing Forum takes place, gathering over 600 participants from Europe, Zambia and the region and leading to concrete business deals. A Memorandum of Understanding to set up a high-tech production health hub for medicines and vaccines is signed.
- April 2023
MSc and PhD programmes in Biotechnology are launched in partnership between Team Europe and University of Rwanda. The programmes bring together the expertise of EU Member States’ universities to train the future Rwandan workforce on academic and industrial aspects of biotechnology, vaccine development and manufacturing.
European Commission and European External Action Service
European Medicines Agency and network of European regulators
European and Developing Countries Clinical Trials Partnership (EDCTP)
EU Member States (funders): Germany, France and Belgium
EU Member States (supporters): Denmark, Hungary, Netherlands, Portugal, Czechia, Spain, Poland, Sweden, Malta, Austria, Italy, Lithuania, Greece
EIB and bilateral banks
African Union Commission
Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention
AUDA-NEPAD (African Union Development Agency)
African Medicines Agency
African governments and national regulatory agencies
Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation