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African Development Bank approves emergency funds

The African Development Bank has approved COVID-19 emergency funds to its member countries which have reached the continent’s five geographic regions.

The COVID-19 pandemic is seen to cause a drop in Africa’s gross domestic profits by between US$22.1B and US$88B.

By June 12, the African Development emergency package had reached Africa’s five geographical regions.

Before the pandemic, West Africa was home to at least four of Africa’s fastest-growing economies and has felt the impact of the pandemic as borders remain closed, economic distress deepens.

To bolster national health systems in response to the Pandemic, Mali, Niger and Gambia will benefit from an ECOWAS US$22M support package.

From the Emergency package, Nigeria got €288.5M, Senegal €88M, Côte d’Ivoire €75M and Cabo Verde €30M.

Funds to this region will seek to address shortages in ventilators, personal protective equipment (PPE) and emergency equipment. The funds will also enable the governments in the beneficiary countries to provide shortfall cash to millions of people who have been affected by mass layoffs and people who are unable to work due to lockdowns.

With over 60,000 cases as of June 12, North Africa is the worst-hit region by the pandemic. In this region, the pandemic has caused a sharp drop in household incomes as well as immensely affected the export and tourism sector.

From the emergency funds, Morocco got €264M, Tunisia €180M and Egypt US$500k.

The funds in this region will help ensure the supply and distribution of laboratory tests and reagents as well as assisting with a series of emergency operations to boost containment measures.

The East Africa region which is the fastest-growing region in the continent economically has been struck simultaneously by the Coronavirus pandemic and desert locust infestation which has greatly affected farmers and the economy of the region.

Kenya, Ethiopia and Rwanda are the top-performing countries in the region, have all seen a sharp fall in tourism revenue.

Kenya received €188M.

In the Southern Africa region, Mauritius got €188M and Zimbabwe US$1.7M.

African Development Bank assistance to this region is in the form of preventive and protection measures and financial assistance to the vulnerable post-pandemic.

In Central Africa, the region got US$13.5M, which will target acquiring testing kits, PPEs and healthcare and laboratory facilities for the Democratic Republic of Congo, Chad and Central African Republic which is among the countries with the least number of ventilators in the continent.

Source: The Exchange

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