• Friday, Oct 30, 2020
  • Last Update : 04:13 pm

Economic recovery from Covid-19: Bangladesh seeks more funds from ADB

  • Published at 02:49 pm September 19th, 2020
Rajib Dhar/Mehedi Hasan

Bangladesh is committed to working together with ADB to tackle challenges of Covid-19, Fatima said 

Bangladesh has requested the Asian Development (ADB) to increase concessional resources to the affected developing member countries (DMC) to overcome Covid-19 and achieve economic recovery.

Fatima Yasmin, alternate governor of ABD from Bangladesh, made the call at the 53rd Annual Meeting virtually held between September 17 and 18.

“On behalf of Bangladesh, I acknowledge with deep appreciation ADB’s quick response for providing expenditure support of $500 million and health emergency support of US $100 million and grant of $6 million for procurement of emergency health supplies and equipments,” Fatima said.

ADB’s support contributes to achieving health and economic resilience through meeting needs of health, creating employment, promoting small and medium-sized enterprises, helping migrant workers, workers worst-hit by Covid-19, and expanding social safety net to improve the livelihood of the vulnerable groups.

“In the given situation, we request ADB to increase concessional resources to the affected DMCs to overcome Covid-19 and achieve economic recovery,” Fatima added.

“Bangladesh is committed to working together, and also in a coordinated way, to tackle challenges of Covid-19,” she said.

She also said Bangladesh has made significant progress in the socio-economic sector particularly in health, education, life expectancy, reduction of child and maternal mortality, women empowerment and reducing poverty.

The country demonstrates impressive improvement in socioeconomic indicators like poverty rate reduced to 20.5% and extreme poverty rate to 10.5%, with a per capita income of $2,064 and life expectancy of 72.4 years.

“So, I would like to put forward some expectations to ADB for achieving global development goals,” Fatima said.

“Bangladesh is a country of 160 million people and for a country like Bangladesh belonging to DMC group B, ADB may increase the threshold of Covid Pandemic Response Option (CPRO) from US $500 million to US$ 1 billion. 

“Second, to address the prolonged nature of Covid-19 challenges ADB can actively consider a second round of CIPRO to the affected DMCs.

“Third, ADB may come forward with innovative and affordable financing models, for example, impact financing, equity financing, green bonds to help DMCs strengthen their social and economic infrastructure.

“Fourth, appropriate technology transfer can be encouraged to tap the opportunities of the blue economy or ocean economy.

“Fifth, private sector engagement can be enhanced through provision of equity and more affordable and innovative instruments may be developed for attracting private sector participation.

“We hope that together we can combat Covid-19 impacts and be able to achieve a transformational development for our future generation,” Fatima concluded.

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