(Ecofin Agency) - The World Bank approved on April 30 under an accelerated financing mechanism, the additional disbursement of 20 million to help Tunisia strengthen its health system in this pandemic.
Before this new support, Tunisia had obtained $15 million from the institution earlier in April, through the fund of an existing project, namely the Irrigation Agriculture Intensification Project in Tunisia.
The cumulative total of $35 million will provide the Tunisian Ministry of Health with essential medical equipment and supplies to strengthen its capacity for covid-19 response and prevention.
According to the World Bank, assistance to Tunisia during the covid-19 crisis is intended to support the government's economic measures, the emergency efforts of the Ministry of Health, including the strengthening of social and social safety nets, assistance to small and medium enterprises and the creation of conditions for economic recovery.
To this end, the institution reports that up to an additional $100 million will be reallocated to finance additional social benefits and grants to small and medium-sized enterprises.
World Bank Country Officer Tony Verheijen (photo) said: We are currently working in close collaboration with the Tunisian government to support its health, social and economic measures, using new and existing funds, to help the Tunisian people in overcoming this crisis and in restarting the economy on a strong footing.”
According to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the Tunisian economy, which is emerging from several years of crisis, is expected to contract by 4.3% this year. The latest data on the Covid-19 as of May 4 reported 1,018 confirmed cases, with 43 deaths in the country.