African Union and EDCTP sign Memorandum of Understanding to promote new paradigm in health

14 September 2021

The African Union (AU) through the African Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC), and the European and Developing Countries Clinical Trials Partnership (EDCTP) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) aimed at establishing a framework to serve as a firm basis for cooperation in their shared goals to promote a new paradigm in health.

Through the MoU, the Africa CDC and EDCTP express their commitment towards joining efforts and maintaining a close and continuous relationship for the achievement of their common objectives. The scope of the MoU is defined through the following themes: Emerging and re-emerging infectious diseases, epidemic intelligence and capacity building for preparedness and outbreak response. The MoU also covers implementation and public health research, the one health approach, and data management. AU and EDCTP will cooperate to implement a programme of work for the execution of activities within these themes.

“The COVID‐19 pandemic represents an unprecedented challenge to health systems, the economy and society across Africa. The partnership between Africa CDC and EDCTP will allow African Union Member States to build back better and stronger from the pandemic. It will take Member States a step closer to a strong and resilient health systems that can prevent, detect, and efficiently respond to infectious disease threats, wherever and whenever they may occur on the continent.”

Dr John Nkengasong, Director of Africa CDC

“The Africa CDC and EDCTP have already been working as a team to fight diseases and epidemics on the African continent for close to 5 years. We have closely collaborated on a strategic level as well as in organizing concrete activities to accelerate clinical development and strengthen health research infrastructure. The MoU provides a firm basis to further strengthen this relationship and push the boundaries of improving global health. I look forward to this renewed collaboration and to putting the right policies and infrastructures in place.”

Dr Michael Makanga, EDCTP Executive Director

“The challenge of improving the health conditions of every African requires the joining of efforts, knowledge and resolve from different partners, acting in synergy and complementarity. That is precisely what this MoU intends to consolidate taking stock of the fruitful work the Africa CDC and the EDCTP have been doing together over the recent past. I’m confident new and higher successes will be jointly attained for the benefit of Africa.”

Dr Leonardo Simão, High Representative for Africa

About Africa CDC 

Africa CDC is a specialized technical institution of the African Union that strengthens the capacity and capability of Africa’s public health institutions as well as partnerships to detect and respond quickly and effectively to disease threats and outbreaks, based on data-driven interventions and programmes. Learn more at:


The European & Developing Countries Clinical Trials Partnership (EDCTP) is a public–public partnership between 14 European and 16 African countries, supported by the European Union. EDCTP’s vision is to reduce the individual, social and economic burden of poverty-related infectious diseases affecting sub-Saharan Africa. EDCTP’s mission is to accelerate the development of new or improved medicinal products for the identification, treatment, and prevention of infectious diseases, including emerging and re-emerging diseases, through pre- and post-registration clinical studies, with emphasis on phase II and III clinical trials. This approach integrates conduct of research with development of African clinical research capacity and networking. Learn more at

About the African Union 

The African Union is a continental body that leads Africa’s development and integration in close collaboration with the 55 Member States, the Regional Economic Communities and African citizens. The vision of African Union is to accelerate progress towards an integrated, prosperous, and inclusive Africa, at peace with itself, playing a dynamic role in the continental and global arena, effectively driven by an accountable, efficient, and responsive Commission. Learn more at:

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