(Image source from: thehansindia.com)
With the kind of crisis that India is currently facing with the rampant spread of the coronavirus, the World Bank has issued an emergency fund of $1 billion to help the country fight the disease.
The first set of aid projects that is currently amounting to $1.9 billion has been designated to help over 25 countries during this time of crisis. The same will further extend on to 40 different nations to help the individuals fight this.
For the first bid, the largest chunk of the financial help is going to be provided for India, who is in utter need of the same with over 2000 confirmed cases and reporting over 50 deaths because of the Covid-19.
In an issued statement after the Board of Directors decided on the first set of aid, World Bank stated saying, “In India, $1 billion emergency financing will support better screening, contact tracing, and laboratory diagnostics; procure personal protective equipment; and set up new isolation wards.”
Aside from India, World Bank has also approved further assistance to some of the other South Asian countries including $200 million for Pakistan, $100 million for Afghanistan, $128.6 million for Sri Lanka and $7.3 million for Maldives.
The World Bank has also stated saying that they are working to further grant over $160 billion in the coming 15 months to ensure better stability of the economic status of the countries affected the worst by the coronavirus pandemic.
The broader economic programme that is going to come later in the second stage will target the time of recovery, create better conditions for the economic growth and even support a number of the small and medium enterprises.
World Bank President David Malpass stated saying, “The World Bank Group is taking broad, fast action to reduce the spread of Covid-19 and we already have health response operations moving forward in over 65 countries.”
Malpass further stated saying that they are working collaboratively to help bolster and strengthen the developing nations’ abilities to respond to the pandemic. They are also strategising ways to shorten the economic and social recovery that is left behind because of this.
It is true that the poorest and the most vulnerable countries will be hit the worst because of this global pandemic but the World Bank team is going to stay focused on the country level solutions for faster recovery from this crisis.
The impacts and the chain disruptions has also prompted the World Bank to further help the countries access the critically needed medical resources and reach out to the suppliers on the behalf of the governments.
The media statement from World Bank also urged the priviledged to help a lending hand to the developing countries for the overall Covid-19 health response, as mentioned in the statement.
With the global rate of the confirmed cases of the covid-19 cross a million with over 51,000 death reports, this quick action from the World Bank was a need of the hour.
By Somapika Dutta