Nigeria and other regional member nations will get emergency credit of up to $10 billion from the African Development Bank (AfDB) to battle COVID-19.
Akinwunmi Adesina, the AfDB chief said on Wednesday “Africa is facing enormous fiscal challenges to respond to the coronavirus pandemic effectively. The African Development Bank Group is deploying its full weight of emergency response support to assist Africa at this critical time.
“We must protect lives. This facility will help African countries to fast-track their efforts to contain the rapid spread of COVID-19.”
Its latest support to the campaign against the pandemic, the response facility will serve as the basic means through which it will direct actions aimed at resolving the crisis, the Abidjan-based lender said.
The stimulus also has the private sector among its beneficiaries.
Of the lump sum, $5.5 billion goes to sovereign operations in AfDB member nations, $3.1 billion to sovereign and regional activities for African Development Fund member countries and an additional sum of $1.35 billion to the private sector.
“The setting up of the facility required a collective effort and courage by all our staff, board of directors and our shareholders,” said Swazi Tshabalala, Acting Senior Vice-President.
AfDB inaugurated its $3 billion Fight COVID-19 Social Bond in the last week of March, which is said to be the biggest US dollar-denominated social bond in history to feature on the international capital market.
“Two weeks ago, the Bank launched a record-breaking $3 billion Fight COVID-19 Social Bond, the world’s largest US dollar-denominated social bond ever on the international capital market. Last week, the Board of Directors also approved a $2 million grant for the World Health Organization for its efforts on the continent,” a statement on the AfDB website reads.