ADB extends support in fight against Covid-19

Bank signs deals with Pakistan for strengthening public health response


​ Our Correspondent June 06, 2020
PHOTO: AFP

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan and the Asian Development Bank (ADB) on Friday signed an agreement to expand support for Islamabad’s response to the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa through the National Disaster Risk Management Fund (NDRMF).

Economic Affairs Division Secretary Noor Ahmed and ADB Country Director for Pakistan Xiaohong Yang inked a loan agreement, aimed at strengthening Pakistan’s public health response to Covid-19 and help meet basic needs of the poor and vulnerable.

Under the agreement, the government of Norway will provide a $5.28-million grant to strengthen the emergency response system in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa amid the Covid-19 crisis. The grant is being drawn from unused resources of the Pakistan Earthquake Fund and will be administered by the ADB.

“The grant will help provide emergency response services, procure necessary equipment and supplies to poor communities in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa’s remote areas,” said Xiaohong. “This reflects the enduring partnership and commitment of the Norwegian government and the ADB to supporting disaster risk reduction in Pakistan.”

Separately, Pakistan and the ADB signed an agreement for a $300-million emergency assistance, initially approved by the bank on May 19. The agreement is aimed at strengthening Pakistan’s public health response to Covid-19 and helping meet basic needs of the poor and vulnerable.

“The assistance from the ADB will support Ehsaas programme to continue providing emergency cash transfers to poor families and women,” said Xiaohong.

Published in The Express Tribune, June 6th, 2020.

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