Abu Dhabi’s ADFD to contribute to Arab Coordination Group’s $10bn Covid-19 support fund

Package will include grants, loans, trade insurance, technical assistance and capacity development programmes

Fishermen collect fishes from a early morning catch during a government-imposed nationwide lockdown as a preventive measure against the COVID-19 coronavirus, in Chennai on April 20, 2020.    / AFP / Arun SANKAR
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Abu Dhabi Fund for Development is to contribute to a $10 billion (Dh36.7bn) support fund, committed by institutions within the Arab Coordination Group, to help developing countries weather the economic fallout from the coronavirus pandemic.

The $10bn package will include technical assistance, grants, concessional loans, financing, trade insurance and capacity development programmes, ADFD said in a statement on Wednesday.

“Developing countries face a grave situation. The loss of lives and the sheer scale of suffering is saddening. Developing countries urgently need swift, effective support, not only to develop their responses to the pandemic, but to deal with its economic aftermath,” Mohammed Saif Al Suwaidi, director-general of Abu Dhabi Fund for Development, said.

The pandemic has hammered the global economy, which is set to contract 3 per cent this year and is projected to slide into the deepest recession since the Great Depression It has hit developing nations – already reeling from slower growth - particularly hard as they look to prop up their economies.

The support, agreed at a virtual meeting on May 18, will help developing countries obtain the medical supplies and protective equipment they need. The funding will also help beneficiaries develop effective interventions to combat the pandemic and its economic effects.

Longer-term support includes assistance for both public and private organisations in important economic sectors such as agriculture, food security, energy, education and support for micro-, small- and medium-sized enterprises.

The pandemic requires a coordinated response, Mr Al Suwaidi said.

“We live in a globalised world. Helping developing countries get the support they need to build their resilience and their economic recovery helps to support the world’s economic recovery,”

The IMF and World Bank have been offering emergency funds to developing and low-income nations across the world to bolster their efforts to fight the rapidly spreading deadly virus.

Last month, the World Bank approved an initial $1.9bn in emergency aid for coronavirus spending to 25 developing countries.