The International Vaccine Institute (IVI), an international organization with a mission to discover, develop, and deliver safe, effective, and affordable vaccines for global health, and the Ministry of Health of Rwanda have announced that IVI will open its Africa Regional Office in Kigali this year.


The IVI Board of Trustees (BOT) confirmed Rwanda as the location for IVI’s Africa Regional Office at a meeting in February, following a detailed evaluation of proposals from five countries to host the regional office.

Dr. Jerome Kim, Director General of IVI, said: “We are thrilled to announce the decision to establish IVI’s Africa Regional Office in Rwanda. This new office will play a pivotal role in providing on-the-ground support and leadership for IVI’s work in Africa, increasing IVI engagement and coordination with African stakeholders, and establishing stronger partnerships around training for vaccine R&D, manufacturing, and policy.

”We look forward to joining the growing ecosystem of vaccine R&D partners on the continent and continuing our work with local and regional collaborators to support sustainable vaccine manufacturing. IVI’s regional office in Africa has found an excellent home in Kigali and we are proud to have the support of the Rwandan Ministry of Health and the University of Rwanda, which will be an critical technical partner.”

Bridging the gap

Dr. Sabin Nsanzimana, Rwanda Minister of Health, said:  Rwanda is taking a leap in bridging the vaccine equity gap on the African continent by venturing into local production of vaccines, therapeutics and other life-saving medical products. Hosting the IVI Africa regional office is yet another milestone towards a resilient Africa with regard to potential public health emergencies and we are honored to serve as its host. We are committed to continuing this important partnership with IVI and to initiating similar collaborations in the future.”

During its inaugural meeting in October 2023, the IVI Global Council, a representative body composed of IVI State Parties, unanimously endorsed IVI’s intention to build up its presence in Africa and recommended to the BOT a continental approach that bridges vaccine research, development, and training with sustainable manufacturing as its final objective. The establishment of the IVI Africa Regional Office reflects a strategic focus on international expansion with the aim of bolstering IVI’s global health impact.

As the administrative focal point in the region, the office will represent IVI in Africa, expanding its member base and engagement. As an implementing partner in the regional vaccine ecosystem, the office will particularly emphasize clinical trial training capacity while pursuing and facilitating joint grant applications with local partners to invigorate vaccine research, development, innovation, and collaboration in Rwanda and beyond.

IVI is headquartered in Seoul, Republic of Korea with a Europe Regional Office in Sweden and a Country Office in Austria.