JOHANNESBURG, Jan. 21 (Xinhua) -- The World Bank has approved a loan of 750 million U.S. dollars to South Africa to fight COVID-19, said the national treasury Friday.
The national treasury said the development policy loan (DPL) would help tackle COVID-19, protect the poor and vulnerable from the adverse socioeconomic impacts of the pandemic and support a resilient and sustainable economic recovery.
"The World Bank budget support is coming at a critical time for us and will contribute toward addressing the financing gap stemming from additional spending in response to the COVID-19 crisis. It will assist in addressing the immediate challenge of financing critical health and social safety net programs while also continuing to develop our economic reform agenda to build back better," said Dondo Mogajane, the director-general of the National Treasury.
The World Bank Country Director for South Africa Marie Francoise Marie-Nelly said the loan is part of the bank's program to help stimulate investment and job creation.
"With this DPL, we have partnered with the government to provide much-needed relief from the impacts of the most serious economic crisis South Africa has experienced in the past 90 years while tackling long-standing challenges to growth and development. This support aims to put the country on a more resilient and inclusive growth path by leveraging South Africa's strength to mitigate the effects of the COVID-19 crisis through their strong social safety net and by advancing critical economic reforms," she said. ■