From March 6th to 9th , Sylvie Guillemaut, ECOMORE 2 Financial Coordinator at the International Affairs Department (Institut Pasteur Paris), and Emilie Carlot, ECOMORE 2 Regional Coordinator (Institut Pasteur du Cambodge) traveled to Manila and Hanoi to visit the project’s partners, based at the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM, Philippines) and at the National Institute for Hygiene and Epidemiology (NIHE, Vietnam). Both visits had the objectives to follow-up on the financial aspects of each of these countries, as well as to exchange about the scientific scope of a potential ECOMORE 3.
The RITM team gave updates on the postponed field activities related to the In2Care trap installations and saliva test collections. Indeed, the Tal Volcano eruption of February 2021 coupled with the COVID-19 pandemic prevented the team to implement in due time their study.
During their stay, Sylvie and Emilie were introduced to Dr. Atty Ana Liza Hombrado-Duran, Director of RITM, and Dr. Amado Tandoc, Chief of Laboratory Research Division. Dr. Hombrado-Duran took this opportunity to briefly describe RITM’s organization and future structural prospects, all while sharing her great satisfaction about the ECOMORE 2 project and its ongoing collaborations. She hopes that these collaborations will only strengthen in the coming years, especially in the framework of an ECOMORE third chapter. The working team also exchanged extensively with RITM Finance department representatives to better understand the national regulations and procurement processes, with the aim to facilitate the overall workflow in the perspective of ECOMORE 3.
The project’s outline in the region and in the Philippines was introduced to Benedicte Gazon, (AFD Country Director) Aleksi Leskinen (AFD Project Officer) and Ines Ferrer (Scientific Advisor at the French Embassy in Manila) during a visit at AFD Philippines agency.
The work trip continued in Hanoi, Vietnam, where Emilie and Sylvie met with the NIHE ECOMORE team, in the person of Prof. Le Thi Quynh Mai (Deputy Director), Prof. Le Thi Phuong Mai (Project Leader, Head of the Public Health Department), Mrs. Tran Thi Mai Hung (Deputy Head of the International Cooperation Department), Mrs. Minh Nguyen (Officer at the International Cooperation Department) to address financial matters as well.
The regional coordinator, Emilie Carlot also took the opportunity to meet with Hervé Conan, (Director of AFD Vietnam agency), Lan Anh Nguyen (Program Officer, AFD Vietnam agency) and Gilles Angles (Scientific Officer at the French Embassy in Hanoi).
All in all, this mission rang the bell of the beginning of the administrative closure of ECOMORE phase 2 all while securely paving the way for a third chapter of the ECOMORE program.