President Mohamed Farmaajo has called for mobilization of financial support from the World Bank and African Development to cushion the IGAD region from economic effects of COVID-19 noting the region was at risk of long term economic shocks from the global pandemic.
Addressing the IGAD Extraordinary summit remotely Monday, President Farmaajo warned the region, which is currently recovering from a devastating locust invasion, was at risk of economic deterioration noting there was need for the bloc’s engagement with international financial institutions.
“The economic losses are grave and, as a region, while we may have individual economic and fiscal interventions to ease the pain on a short-term basis, we do not benefit from a collective fund to mitigate the worst of the economic shock to come from the virus in the medium to long term,” President Farmaajo said.
Noting the extraordinary measures taken by individual countries to curb the spread of the disease could adversely affect revenue mobilization and personal incomes, the President called for a collective action by the IGAD block.
On these crucial financial matters, the mobilization of the Regional Windows of the International Financial Institutions, especially the World Bank and African Development Bank, are important as they will complement our individual countries allocations and ongoing and future health projects, the president noted.
“I therefore propose a separate IGAD Finance Minister’s meeting with the Development Banks and relevant bilateral and multilateral partners to take these matters forward.”
President Farmaajo also warned his country did not have sufficient medical resources to respond to the coronavirus pandemic ‘because of the infancy of its health systems and infrastructure which are only now starting to take shape’.