AMF extends loan facility worth $41m to Jordan to ease Covid-19 economic impact

The Abu Dhabi-based financial institution had disbursed a $38m loan to Jordan in May

A handout photo of Four Seasons Hotel Amman in Jordan (Courtesy: Four Seasons Hotel Amman) *** Local Caption ***  wk22ja-tr-briefs-amman.jpeg
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The Arab Monetary Fund (AMF) extended a loan facility worth $41 million (Dh150.5m) to Jordan, further increasing its support to ease the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic on the country.

The Abu Dhabi-based financial institution had disbursed a $38m loan to Jordan in May to help the country ride out the pandemic and boost growth.

“The AMF follows closely the developments of the Jordanian economy and the challenges it faces due to the current circumstances and works through a fruitful partnership with the Jordanian government to help the country contain the different challenges in the most effective way,” the AMF said in a statement on Thursday.

Jordan, whose economy relies heavily on foreign aid and grants, is projected to contract 3.7 per cent this year due to the impact of the pandemic, according to the International Monetary Fund. In July, the country raised $1.75 billion from a double tranche eurobond to help it cushion its economy amid the pandemic.

The kingdom was one of the first countries to close its airport in the Middle East and implemented a strict lockdown to prevent the spread of Covid-19. Jordan has registered 2,659 Covid-19 infections to date and 19 deaths, according to Worldometers, which tracks the pandemic. More than 1,900 people also recovered from the infection.

Jordan reopened its international airport in the capital Amman earlier this week after it registered a fall in the number of coronavirus cases.

The AMF said it is currently studying financing requests from other member countries and is processing them "through expeditious procedures, in order to provide support as quickly as possible, so that the borrowing member countries can meet financing needs and enhance their financial positions to face various challenges, especially in such times”.

The financial institution recently extended a credit facility worth $639m to Egypt to help it reform its public finance sector. The organisation has also provided loans worth $211m and $98m to Morocco and Tunisia to help them tide over the Covid-19 outbreak.

The AMF was founded in 1976 to support its member countries in implementing various economic and financial reforms to boost growth. Its member countries include the UAE, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Somalia, Iraq, Oman, Palestine, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libya, Jordan and Egypt.