Asian Development Bank (ADB) President Masatsugu Asakawa on Friday assured Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman of $2.2 billion (about ₹ 16,500 crore) support to India in its fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.
In a call, Mr. Asakawa commended the Indian government’s decisive response to the pandemic, including a national health emergency program, tax and other relief measures provided to businesses and a $23 billion (₹1.7 lakh crore) economic relief package announced on March 26 to provide immediate income and consumption support to the poor, women, and workers affected by the three-week nationwide lockdown.
“ADB is committed to supporting India’s emergency needs. We are now preparing $2.2 billion in immediate assistance to the health sector and to help alleviate the economic impact of the pandemic on the poor; informal workers; micro, small, and medium-sized enterprises; and the financial sector,” Mr.Asakawa said.
ADB is also engaged with the private sector to meet its financing needs during this period, ADB said in a statement.
“ADB assistance for India will be further increased if needed. We will consider all financing options available with us to meet India’s needs, including emergency assistance, policy-based loans, and budget support to facilitate swift disbursement of ADB funds, he said.
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