As COVID-19 reaches more than 60 countries, the World Bank Group on Tuesday announced an initial package of up to $12bn in immediate support to assist countries coping with the health and economic impacts of the global outbreak.
The bank in a statement released in Washington said the financing was designed to help member countries take effective action to respond to and, where possible, lessen the tragic impacts posed by the COVID-19.
The statement said through the new fast track package, the World Bank Group would help developing countries strengthen health systems, including better access to health services to safeguard people from the epidemic, strengthen disease surveillance, bolster public health interventions, and work with the private sector to reduce the impact on economies
The financial package, with financing drawn from across IDA, IBRD and IFC, will be globally coordinated to support country-based responses.
“The COVID-19 support package will make available initial crisis resources of up to $12bn in financing — $8bn of which is new — on a fast track basis,” the bank said.
It added, “This comprises up to $2.7bn new financing from IBRD; $1.30bn from IDA, complemented by reprioritisation of $2bn of the bank’s existing portfolio; and $6bn from IFC, including $2bn from existing trade facilities.
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