Additionally, the South Africa mass vaccination campaign has already kicked off, and the operation is quite costly. With $712 million, the country is looking forward to vaccinating 67% of its 60 million people. All these efforts to curb the covid-19 novel are expected to help boost the country`s economy. The coronavirus has hard-hit South Africa`s economy both in the first and second waves. The situation is much worse in the second phase following the confirmation of the coronavirus’s new variant. The economy records a decline of 7.2% as of last year. A number that South Africa hopes to alter and realize a 3.4% rise in the economy.
Report from the Financial Department of South Africa
According to financial Minister Tito Mboweni, the mass vaccination will translate to positive results on the country`s economy. Currently, the unemployment rate in South Africa is at around 32.5%. The youth account for the largest unemployed persons with a rate that exceeds 60%. Moreover, a total of more than 16 million people are dependent on welfare grants.
The two-month lockdown resulted in a population of around 2 million people losing their jobs. On Wednesday, Mboweni disclosed the country`s budget. He confirms that the money set aside to secure a vaccination program will help rebuild the economy. Additionally, he hopes that with the vaccine, people will be able to resume their places of works. He further confirms the vaccines will be free of charge. Moreover, his plans to recover the economy do not involve any additional taxes on businesses or individuals.
South Africa mass vaccination campaign
The vaccination kicked off last week. South Africa opts for the J&J vaccine over the AstraZeneca vaccine due to efficacy issues. According to South African scientists, the AstraZeneca vaccine is way less effective on the new variant which the country is currently battling. Tests from the J&J vaccine offer a better efficacy percentage.
As a result, South Africa moves on to partake of the J&J vaccine despite the AstraZeneca vaccine’s previous purchase. South Africa is looking forward to selling the AstraZeneca vaccine to the African Union to distribute to other countries without the new variant.
Protests over the South Africa Economy
South Africa Federation of Trade Unions conducted a protest outside the parliament. This was during the presentation of the country`s budget by the finance minister. Protesters’ demands include equality and availability of jobs. The country is putting measures in place like the vaccination campaign to help alter the situation. Police took action to disperse the protesters.