UNICEF is a leader in the procurement of supplies for children and humanitarian interventions. In 2006, it collaborated with UN agencies, selected non-governmental organizations, the World Bank and the private sector for a total procurement of supplies valued at about $1.2 billion. The organization also acquired about $17 million worth of in-kind donations, such as vitamin A, BP5 (compact high-protein food), water and sanitation supplies, and other relief items.
The organization procured vaccines for 40 per cent of the world’s children and antiretroviral medicines for 49 countries, and continues to be one of the world’s largest buyers of mosquito nets and therapeutic food for children. UNICEF provided timely and essential commodities to ameliorate the effects of emergencies in 60 countries. And UNICEF produced educational supplies that helped more than 10 million children return to school in 2006.
Vaccines and related supplies made up the bulk of UNICEF’s acquisitions, totalling $564 million: $495 million for vaccines, $48 million for autodisable syringes and $21 million for cold chain equipment.
UNICEF ANNUAL REPORT 2006
Oral polio vaccines were purchased at a historic high of 2.3 billion doses to support global polio-eradication campaigns. Polio-eradication initiatives in Bangladesh and Nigeria alone required more than 70 million doses of the vaccine.
To help combat malaria, purchases of mosquito nets reached a record $125 million, compared with $84 million in 2005. Twenty-two million nets were purchased, more than 90 per cent of them long-lasting insecticidal nets. UNICEF procured nearly $15 million worth of artemisinin-based combination therapy medications in 2006. Combined with $6.8 million worth of malaria rapid test kits, these supplies helped UNICEF fight a fierce child killer.
During 2006, UNICEF procured and pre-positioned stockpiles of vaccines against meningitis to expedite the response in the event of an outbreak. When these deadly viral infections struck, more than 3.5 million children were vaccinated against meningitis and approximately 6 million against yellow fever, mainly in the West and Central Africa region.