The Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) has set aside US$2 billion to help Latin American countries with their efforts to contain the outbreak of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19).
“The IDB has up to $2 billion in resources that can be programmed to countries requesting support for disease monitoring, testing, and public health services,” said the bank in a statement about the coronavirus pandemic.
Also, the bank said it is studying the economic consequences of the pandemic and might soon offer additional financial resources for member countries to weather the mid- and long-term effects.
The outbreak of the disease has affected the operations of the bank as well. Reports say that two of its employees in Brazil have been tested positive for the virus.
The announcement came two weeks after the International Monitory Fund (IMF) said it had made available US$50 billion for assisting emerging market economies in their fight against COVID-19.
Similarly, Latin American development bank, CAF, has also offered credits worth US$300 million to help countries manage emergencies related to coronavirus.
Such financial aid is need of the hour as many countries in the region, particularly in the Caribbean, are struggling to fund ongoing projects and programs as they have redirected a bulk of their resources to curb the pandemic.