The World Bank announced Tuesday that its emergency aid to combat the health and economic impact of the coronavirus has already benefited 100 developing countries which are home to 70% of the world's population.
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" This is an important step in the group's efforts (...) to deploy $ 160 billion over a period of 15 months ", which runs until July 2021, said its president David Malpass during a conference call.
The programs financed within the framework of this envelope must respond " effectively to the health, economic and social shocks " with which these countries are confronted, he recalled. They must also strengthen health care systems and provide " vital " medical supplies and equipment .
David Malpass also invited other donors to come forward to help the poorest. Because " the pandemic and the closure of advanced economies could plunge up to 60 million people into extreme poverty, erasing much of the recent progress made in the fight against poverty ".
39 countries in sub-Saharan Africa
This aid must also prepare for a lasting economic recovery. Of the 100 countries that have received financial support, 39 are in sub-Saharan Africa. Almost a third of the total projects are in fragile situations and affected by conflicts, such as Afghanistan, Chad, Haiti and Niger.
" The World Bank is providing significant resources but this will not be enough, " warned David Malpass, stressing the need to allow developed countries to return to strong growth to allow a recovery in developing countries.
This is all the more crucial as remittances to poor countries and tourism have collapsed. The losses are " critical " for the countries concerned, noted David Malpass. The resumption of money transfers and tourism "will be crucial stages in the reopening " of economies.
The World Bank expects a global recession of 5% this year. For its part, the International Monetary Fund had estimated in April the recession at 3% but it will publish new forecasts in June.