World Bank Supports Ghana Covid-19 Emergency Preparedness and Response Project with Funds to Procure Vaccines

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The Minister for Finance, Ken Ofori-Atta has reiterated that, the fast pace of global recovery will be largely dependent on the joint determination to forge lasting partnerships between nations, multilateral institutions and the private sector.

He made these comments during the Ghana and the World Bank signing ceremony for the Ghana Productive Safety Net Project-2 (GPSNP-2) of US$100.0 million and Second Additional Financing for Ghana COVID-19 Emergency Preparedness and Response Project (COVID-19 AF-2) of US$200.0 million to procure vaccines. The facility is a 30-year loan and will attract a 0.5 per cent interest rate and a service charge of 1.7 per cent.

The Minister further added that the way to go is for “secure economies of mutuality and not power blocks and resource ha

He indicated that the pandemic has had a life-changing impact on people around the world as well as its associated economic challenges, since its discovery in December 2019.

Hon. Ofori-Atta reiterated that the government’s focus and commitment throughout the pandemic had remained on not leaving anyone behind. This is demonstrated through interventions introduced and deployed over the last twelve months including ensuring the safety and continuity support for the return of Senior High School students with GHS1.2 billion, 1.5 million vulnerable citizens supported with cash grants under the LEAP programme and GHS2.7million people provided with cooked meals during the three-week COVID-19 lockdown, among others.

The Minister expressed his profound gratitude to the World Bank for its continued support towards realising President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo’s vision of using the pandemic to create a modernised, competitive and resilient economy where citizens could hope, aspire and reach their fullest potential.

“As we advance, I hope to see additional collaborations, partnerships, and substantial resources from the World Bank towards implementing policy initiatives under the Ghana CARES programme. Specifically targeted support towards enhancing food security, developing local manufacturing capabilities, and optimizing ongoing flagships and strategic programmes’.

The World Bank Country Director, Pierre Laporte on his part commended the country for the efforts put in place in controlling the spread of the virus. “A big congratulation to the Ministry of Health for the exemplary manner in which you have managed both the health service of the country and the economic impact of the pandemic than initially planned and this is good news”, he said.

Mr. Laporte also commended the government for rolling out an effective programme on vaccines that resulted in the speedy deployment of the doses to people, saying Ghana stood out among its peers.

He indicated that the Bank was satisfied with the usage of earlier funds granted the country to enhance the national fight against the pandemic and went further to assure his Ghanaian counterpart that the World Bank will support the country until the desired results in fighting the pandemic are achieved. He added that in total the country has received a $300million from the World Bank.

The Director-General of the Ghana Health Service (GHS), Dr. Patrick Kuma-Aboagye, indicated that the covid-19 protocols helped to reduce infection and the toll that the virus was having on the economy.

He said although the government would do everything to procure sufficient vaccines to achieve herd immunity, it was also pertinent for citizens to protect themselves as the first defense against the deadly disease. He also advised the government to give priority to health sector investments in the push to revive the economy.

Present at the signing were Mr. Michael Ayesu, Coordinating Director (Operations), and Ms. Yvonne Quansah, Director RMERD and other Officials from the Ministry of Health.

Source: Laudbusiness.com|Ghana

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