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Coronavirus: AfDB, others raise US$230 billion in pandemic response

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International financial institutions collectively mobilised a global response package of US$230 billion between 2020 and 2021, to aid the global response to the coronavirus pandemic, the African Development Bank (AfDB) said on Friday.

The funds were raised to reduce the pandemic’s impact of which US$75 billion will be directed to the world’s poorest countries before the end of 2020, the Bank said.

The Bank joined a group of 11 multilateral development banks (MDBs) and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to launch a report on financing the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The launch took place during a virtual ceremony attended by the heads of the institutions on Thursday.

The report is released at the end of a critical year, with the COVID-19 pandemic threatening to reverse progress on the SDGs.

The banks said national and global leaders have recognised the opportunity – and responsibility – to ensure that recovery efforts support the SDGs, the report said.

The report highlights selected examples of initiatives related to the 17 SDGs and efforts to “mobilise finance, create knowledge, and build capacity” for countries for their achievement.

It showcases examples of how their financing directly contributes to advancing SDGs that empower people, protect the planet, foster prosperity for all, and develop sustainable quality infrastructure.

Head of the Islamic Development Bank Group (ISDB), Bandar Hajjar, whose institution led the compilation of the report, said the pandemic had highlighted the fragility of the progress countries have made toward the SDGs and underlined the imperative of fostering better and more resilient development.

“We recognise the urgency to achieve the 2030 Agenda through the work that needs to go into building a more resilient post-COVID-19 world,” Hajjar said.

“The report also emphasises the critical importance of MDBs partnerships to deliver financing, knowledge, and capacity building support for the SDGs.”

Such partnerships and coordination would include increased support for an ambitious climate action for the planet; fostering digitalization for sustainability; continuing to promote sustainable infrastructure, strengthening resilience and mobilizing finance by attracting, de-risking, leveraging and catalyzing investments of all kinds.

“This joint report reflects our collective engagement and strong commitment to accelerate progress towards the SDGs. To accelerate Africa’s development, we will continue joining investment hands across the globe,” African Development Bank President Akinwumi Adesina said.

Examples of African Development Bank initiatives, such as its Technologies for African Agricultural Transformation Programme, which aims to reach 40 million farmers by 2023 and add 120 million metric tons to the African food basket, are included in the report.

Obi Vincent

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