The African Development Bank Group has announced the creation of the COVID-19 Response Facility to assist regional member countries in fighting the pandemic.
The Facility is the latest measure taken by the Bank to respond to the pandemic and will be the institution’s primary channel for its efforts to address the crisis. It provides up to $10 billion to governments and the private sector.
Facing the fiscal challenges
Akinwumi Adesina, President of the African Development Bank Group, said the package took into account the fiscal challenges that many African countries are facing.
“Africa is facing enormous fiscal challenges to respond to the coronavirus pandemic effectively. The African Development Bank Group is deploying its full weight of emergency response support to assist Africa at this critical time. We must protect lives. This Facility will help African countries to fast-track their efforts to contain the rapid spread of COVID-19,” Adesina said, commending the Board of Directors for its unwavering support.
Countries, Sectors, Companies
The Facility includes US$5.5 billion for sovereign operations in African Development Bank countries, and US$3.1 billion for sovereign and regional operations for countries under the African Development Fund, the Bank Group’s concessional arm that caters to fragile countries. An additional US$1.35 billion will be devoted to private sector operations.
Commenting on the Facility, Acting Senior Vice-President Swazi Tshabalala said: “The setting up of the Facility required a collective effort and courage by all our staff, Board of Directors and our shareholders.”
Two weeks ago, the Bank launched a record-breaking $3 billion Fight COVID-19 Social Bond, the world’s largest US dollar-denominated social bond ever on the international capital market. Last week, the Board of Directors also approved a $2 million grant for the World Health Organization for its efforts on the continent.
“These are extraordinary times, and we must take bold and decisive actions to save and protect millions of lives in Africa. We are in a race to save lives. No country will be left behind,” Adesina said.
At the same time, the South African Construction sector has formed its own rapid response task team. The Construction COVID-19 Rapid Response Task Team (“CC19RRTT”) is an industry grouping that was convened to charter a recovery plan for the construction sector. It incorporates the entire construction value chain covering suppliers, manufacturers, property developers, built environment professionals and contractors (main contractors and subcontractors).
It is made up of Master Builders South Africa (MBSA), Association of South African Quantity Surveyors (ASAQS), Western Cape Property Development Forum (WCPDF), South African Institute of Architects (SAIA), Black Business Council in the Built Environment (BBCBE), Consulting Engineers of South Africa (CESA), Association of Construction Project Managers (ACPM), South African Institution of Civil Engineering (SAICE), South African Black Technical and Allied Careers Organisation (SABTACO), South African Women in Construction (SAWIC), The Concrete Institute of South Africa (TCI), Cox Yeats Attorneys and Master Builders KwaZulu-Natal (MBA KZN) as the convener.
– Article written for Concrete Trends