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Guyana will strengthen the country’s public health response to the COVID-19 health emergency through a US$22 million loan approved by the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) under the Contingent Credit Facility for Natural Disaster and Public Health Emergencies.
In a press release the bank said the loan is to finance public expenditures necessary to contain transmission of the disease and mitigate further health and economic consequences.
“Given the ongoing global health crisis and its impacts, the government is facing the challenge of strengthening the country’s health system, while also confronting the financial and liquidity constraints that limit its capacity to continue investing in closing the gaps and building preparedness and response capacity,” the bank said in the release.
The IDB loan will provide an efficient financial coverage under the Contingent Credit Facility to support, in a timely manner, the implementation of Guyana’s strategic response plan to COVID-19. As the number of COVID-19 cases increases, it is critical to ensure that the government has the necessary funding to quickly implement all measures required to control the ongoing emergency and save people’s lives.
The resources of the loan will be used for, among other needs, the purchase of medical equipment, laboratory equipment and inputs, ambulances, and personal protective equipment for health workers, surveillance officers, border personnel. According to the IDB, the operation will benefit the affected population of Guyana that receives emergency assistance under the proposed coverage.
The IDB loan in the amount of US$22 million, of which US$15.4 is charged to the regular ordinary capital of the IDB, with a repayment term of 25 years, a grace period of 5.5 years and an interest rate based on LIBOR. A total of US$6.6 million is charged to concessional ordinary capital, with a repayment and grace term of 40 years and an interest rate of 0.25 percent.