AIIB approves loan to support India’s Covid-19
The Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank’s (AIIB) approved a $500 million loan to support India’s Covid-19 operations, according to a release on 8 May 2020. Co-financed by the World Bank, the funds were aimed at enabling the government to scale up its containment efforts and to strengthen the health system to manage future outbreaks as well. Building a resilient health system that can effectively treat COVID-19 patients and prevent its spread is the immediate priority.
- This funding will address this need and strengthen India’s capacity to effectively manage future disease outbreaks, said AIIB vice president of investment operations.
- The India COVID-19 Emergency Response and Health Systems Preparedness Project comprised six components.
- Apart from the mentioned objectives, it will also support research in collaboration with the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) and community engagement and risk communication strategies.
- On April 17, the AIIB had doubled its initial COVID-19 Crisis Recovery Facility to $10 billion from $5 billion earlier, which made funds available to its members for urgent economic, financial and public health pressures and quick recovery from the crisis.
- Previously, the AIIB’s board of directors approved $355 million funding to China as part of an emergency health project.
- The Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) is a multilateral development bank that aims to support the building of infrastructure in the Indo-Pacific region.
- The bank currently has 78 members as well as 24 prospective members from around the world.
- The bank started operation after the agreement entered into force on 25 December 2015, after ratifications were received from 10 member states holding a total number of 50% of the initial subscriptions of the Authorized Capital Stock.
- The United Nations has addressed the launch of AIIB as having potential for "scaling up financing for sustainable development" and to improve the global economic governance.
- The starting capital of the bank was $100 billion, equivalent to 2⁄3 of the capital of the Asian Development Bank and about half that of the World Bank.
- The bank was proposed by China in 2013 and the initiative was launched at a ceremony in Beijing in October 2014.
- It received the highest credit ratings from the three biggest rating agencies in the world, and is seen as a potential rival to the World Bank and IMF.