World Bank presents comprehensive debt solutions for heavily indebted countries
The World Bank has pledged its commitment to a comprehensive debt solution for countries highly vulnerable to debt that lack the financial resources to respond to the Covid-19 crisis.
According to its country director, Pierre Laporte, comprehensive debt solutions will include four elements: debt suspension, debt reduction, debt resolution and debt transparency.
Speaking on the End Poverty Day 2021 program, Mr Laprote said many low and middle income countries were in a vulnerable position before the Covid-19 pandemic, with slow economic growth as well. as high levels of public and external debt.
“Covid-19 has triggered a surge in debt, especially in emerging and developing market economies, as governments around the world have responded to the Covid-19 pandemic with massive stimulus packages and measures emergency. The resulting debt burden on the world’s low-income countries rose 12% to a record $ 860 billion in 2020. Even before the pandemic, many low- and middle-income countries were in dire straits. vulnerable position, with a slowdown in economic growth and debt at high levels, ”he stressed.
“The World Bank is committed to a comprehensive debt solution that can bring real benefits to people in poor countries, especially heavily indebted countries that do not have the financial resources to respond to the crisis. of Covid-19 ”, he stressed.
World Bank commits $ 435 million to support government covid-19 program
Meanwhile, the World Bank has committed a total of $ 435.8 million to support the Government of Ghana’s health response to Covid-19 under five strategic pillars. They include in particular stopping the importation of Covid-19 cases and limiting the impact of the virus on social and economic life.
According to the World Bank, it has allocated a significant portion of the funding commitment (around $ 150 million) to the acquisition of vaccines, including 16.9 million doses of Johnson & Johnson Covid-19 vaccine through the African Vaccine Acquisition Task Team (AVATT) to achieve Africa The objective of the Union (AU) and WHO to vaccinate 70% of the total population by mid-2022.
Promote resilient recovery
Mr. Laporte said the World Bank is working to help countries, including Ghana, build a green, resilient and inclusive recovery through economic growth.
“As the world responds to the Covid-19 crisis, we (at the World Bank) view poverty, climate change and economic growth as interrelated issues that will define our future. Countries, including Ghana, must achieve sustainable economic growth without further degrading the environment or increasing inequalities. “
“We offer our knowledge and experience on climate change, economic management and social protection to support a resilient recovery based on strong economic growth and job creation: a healthy and vibrant private sector is one of the stones. cornerstones of our Covid-19 strategy. We combine short and long term solutions to help developing countries fight COVID while laying the groundwork for a green, resilient and inclusive recovery, ”said the country director.
Reliable energy is the key to the fight against Covid-19
For energy, Mr Laporte said reliable energy is essential to prevent and combat Covid-19, and necessary to power healthcare and critical communications, and boost economic activity, but access does default in many countries.
The World Bank Group, he said, is committed to closing this gap by helping countries make the transition to clean energy and provide access to affordable, reliable and sustainable energy for all. .
“We advise countries on economically viable solutions, tailored to their needs and informed by the latest political, financial and technological innovations. We have helped Ghana to switch from liquid fuels to gas, seen as a transitional fuel option towards green energy development.