The World Bank has approved $50 million for Egypt as an emergency response under the World Bank Group’s new Fast Track COVID-19 Facility, a global effort to help strengthen the COVID-19 response and shorten the time to recovery, according to the World Bank statement released on Sunday.
The project aims to strengthen the prevention, detection and response to the COVID-19 pandemic in Egypt.
The project will focus on the immediate and critical areas of support identified by the government of Egypt’s national COVID-19 response plan, according to the statement.
The project funds will support procuring and distributing medical equipment and supplies necessary for the COVID-19 response, health worker training, operations of specifically designated quarantine, isolation and treatment centres; mobilisation of rapid response teams in contact tracing of COVID-19 cases, development of contextualised messaging platforms and tools to improve public awareness of COVID prevention, according to the statement.
In addition, it will support innovative Monitoring and Evaluation of social distancing strategies including community mobilisation.
Minister of International Cooperation Rania Al-Mashat said that Egypt acknowledges the efforts undertaken by the World Bank Group at the current unprecedented times.
“This project supports the preparedness efforts and governance of Egypt’s healthcare system. Increased coordinated action to expedite healthcare spending and pave the way for an inclusive post-COVID economic recovery is a national priority,” she added.
Meanwhile, Marina Wes, World Bank Country Director for Egypt, Yemen and Djibouti, said that the World Bank is quickly mobilising to help Egypt strengthen its pandemic response and health care systems.
“This phase of our support aims to protect the poorest and most vulnerable households and help the country implement emergency health operations and strengthen economic resilience,” according to Wes.
The Global Fast Track Facility includes $6 billion financing from the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) and the International Development Association (IDA) in immediate support to assist countries coping with the health and economic impacts of the global outbreak, according the World Bank data.
Egypt has qualified for $50 million in funding, the maximum available for Egypt under the facility based on the criteria of population size, according to the World Bank.
The World Bank and Egypt are continuing discussions on future cooperation and support to lessen the short-term impact of the crisis, including on the poor and most vulnerable, and to accelerate the recovery, according to the statement.