ADB to support Bangladesh tackle coronavirus

Publish: 9:29 PM, March 21, 2020 | Update: 9:29:PM, March 21, 2020

DHAKA : The Asian Development Bank (ADB) will support Bangladesh in tackling novel coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak challenges, ADB Country Director for Bangladesh Manmohan Parkash said, reports UNB.

Parkash had talks with Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal in this regard recently, according to a media statement issued Saturday.
The discussions included the government’s preparedness for mitigating any potential outbreak, its economic impact, and possible ADB support following a government request for assistance.

Bangladesh has requested ADB to provide assistance to help tackle challenges of a potential COVID-19 outbreak in the country, Parkash said, noting that as a long-standing development partner, ADB is committed to assist Bangladesh in this difficult time.

“We have initiated the process of quickly exploring the financing modality and other details in close coordination with the government and other stakeholders,” he said.

The global public health emergency, which has been dubbed a pandemic by the World Health Organization, calls for urgent measures to respond to the disease as well as tackling its economic fallouts.

ADB has recently announced$6.5billion initial package to address the immediate needs of its developing member countries as they respond to the pandemic.

ADB’s previous responses to COVID-19 include$200million made available through its Supply Chain Finance Program for companies manufacturing and distributing medicines and other items needed to combat coronavirus.

ADB’s response to date also includes$2million announced on February 7 to enhance detection, prevention, and response in China and the Greater Mekong Subregion; another$2million announced on February 26 to support response in all its developing members; and $18.6million private sector loan, signed on February 25, to China-based pharmaceutical distributor Jointown Pharmaceutical Group Company Limited to support the continued supply of essential medicines and personal protective equipment.