Belarus to borrow funds from World Bank to fight against COVID-19

Accordign to BelTA with reference to the Ministry of Finance, Belarus is counting on a loan from the World Bank (€ 90 million) and the European Investment Bank (€ 50 million) to fight against COVID-19. An application for macro-financial assistance has also been sent to the European Commission.

The Ministry of Finance notes that an agreement with the World Bank to provide a €90 million loan has already been reached. “The funds will be used to purchase medicines, goods and equipment necessary for health organizations, including respirators, masks, protective suits and goggles, test systems, ultrasound machines, ALV machines, oxygen concentrators, reanimobiles and others,” stressed the press service of the Ministry.

All technical consultations on this project have been completed. Belarus is undergoing domestic procedures necessary for signing the relevant loan agreement. They are expected to be completed in the Ministry of Finance in the near future.

Consultations were held with the European Investment Bank on the allocation of €50 million loan for health care. Now the decision of the Bank’s credit committee is expected. The possibility of attracting macrofinancial assistance from the EU is also being considered and an application to the European Commission has been submitted.

Belarus has initiated the development by the EFSD of a financial instruments package to support countries both to finance anti-epidemiological measures and to mitigate the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition, some state-owned banks are working with international financial institutions to provide preferential financing to support small and medium-sized businesses.