IVI State Forum 2019 was attended by 8th UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, as well as 30 distinguished guests, including 17 ambassadors and top diplomats in Seoul, and senior Korean government officials.
October 14, 2019, SEOUL, Korea — The International Vaccine Institute (IVI) hosted a State Forum at their headquarters in Seoul on Friday, October 11, showcasing the impact of international cooperation in vaccine research and development (R&D), and delivery in low- and middle-income countries.
The high-level meeting was attended by 30 distinguished guests, including 8th UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, ambassadors (A) and diplomats from Colombia, Denmark (A), Ecuador, Egypt, Ethiopia, Germany, Indonesia, Kuwait, Lebanon (A), Myanmar (A), Nepal, Peru (A), Papua New Guinea, Sri Lanka (A), Sweden (A), Netherlands, United Arab Emirates (A), and the European Union (A), as well as senior officials from the Korean government and international agencies.
H.E. Ban Ki-moon attended the forum in person and congratulated IVI on its 22nd anniversary, noting the organization’s strides in advancing global health, particularly for the world’s most vulnerable people. However, he cautioned, “There are still neglected diseases [for which] there is no investment. This is what I call an injustice. Many people still die from vaccine-preventable diseases unnecessarily. It pains me.” Addressing IVI’s member states, he added, “I’m really happy that IVI is in my home country, Korea. And I really thank you all for your support. Moral support, political support, but the most important support would be financial…We really count on your continuing support.”
Watch his full remarks here: H.E. Ban Ki-moon Urges Support for IVI during State Forum.
The Secretary-General’s congratulations were followed by remarks from Ms. Minwon Lee, Director General of the Center for Public Health Emergency Preparedness and Response at the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, as well as Mr. Ki-hwan Kweon, Director General of the International Organizations Bureau of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Korea.
During his welcome, Dr. Jerome Kim, Director General of IVI, expressed his gratitude for the attendance of foreign embassies as well as continued support from member states. He pointed to the critical role of vaccines in international development, saying, “We know that vaccines save lives. We know that vaccines by preventing infection prevent the disease that is associated with infection. Beyond protecting the vaccine recipient,” Dr. Jerome continued, “vaccination protects family members, friends and neighbors; improves growth and cognitive development in children; improves educational attainment; reduces poverty, and promotes economic growth.”
Dr. Teresa Soop, Senior Research Advisor at the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida), delivered a keynote speech on Sweden’s contributions to global health R&D. Sweden has been a signatory of IVI since 1997, and remains one of three state funders since 2002, in addition to the Republic of Korea and India.
Dr. Jerome Kim moderated the forum’s first session on collaboration project models. Mr. Jose Paulo Langa, Head of National Reference Laboratory of Microbiology at the National Institute of Health of Mozambique, presented on a joint cholera control project with IVI in Mozambique; IVI Scientist Dr. Marianne Holm gave an overview of CAPTURA, an IVI-led consortium that will capture data on antimicrobial resistance (AMR) in Asia, and Dr. Nakorn Premsri, Director of the National Vaccine Institute in Thailand, described a collaboration between the Thai Ministry of Public Health and IVI on a human papilloma virus vaccine that may lower vaccine cost and increase the number of vaccinated girls in Thailand.
Francois Belin, Chief Operating Officer of IVI moderated the second session including an open discussion of how IVI could contribute to vaccine capacity-building to its member and non-member countries.
The day’s events concluded with a tour of IVI’s lab facilities, conducted by Dr. Manki Song, Deputy Director General of Science at IVI, followed by a luncheon.
Right to left: H.E. Ban Ki-moon, 8th UN Secretary-General; Dr. Jerome Kim, Director General of IVI; Ms. Minwon Lee, Director General of the Center for Public Health Emergency Preparedness and Response at the Korea Centers for Disease Control & Prevention; and Mr. Ki-hwan Kweon, Director General of the International Organizations Bureau of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Korea.
About the International Vaccine Institute (IVI)
The International Vaccine Institute (IVI) is the world’s only international organization devoted exclusively to developing and introducing new and improved vaccines to protect the world’s poorest people, especially children in developing countries. Established in 1997, IVI operates as an independent international organization under a treaty signed by 35 countries and the World Health Organization. The Institute conducts research in more than 30 countries throughout Asia, Africa and Latin America on vaccines against enteric and diarrheal infections, Japanese encephalitis, MERS-CoV, and dengue fever, and develops new and improved vaccines at its headquarters in Seoul, Republic of Korea. For more information, please visit www.ivi.int
About IVI State Forum 2019
Aerie Em, Global Communications & Program Consultant
+ 82 2 881 1386 | firstname.lastname@example.org