World Bank approves $500-M funding for PH’s vaccination, pandemic response efforts

The World Bank granted US$500-million worth of funds for the Philippines’ vaccination program and COVID-19 pandemic response.

“The newly approved financing will support the Philippines to the population based on vulnerability and risk,” the Washington-based multilateral lender said in a statement.

“Priority groups include frontline health workers, senior citizens, indigent communities, followed by priority groups of teachers, government workers, indigenous peoples, and then the remaining population,”  the World Bank said.

In April, World Bank also approved a $500 million (P25.2 billion) loan of the  Philippines, which will be used to fight the COVID-19 pandemic.

The granted loan was part of the international financial institution’s $14-billion fast-track package to countries around the world combat the new coronavirus.

The P22.2 billion loan is part of a broader package that aims to help the Philippines build disaster resilience, the World Bank said.

The World Bank is an international financial institution that provides and grants to the governments of poorer countries to pursue capital projects. It comprises two institutions: the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development and the International Development Association.

World Bank approves $500-M funding for PH’s vaccination, pandemic response efforts

“Procuring and administering vaccines provides the country an added layer of defense against COVID-19 on top of public health measures or interventions like social distancing, wearing of masks, and washing hands,” said Ndiamé Diop, WB Country Director for Brunei, Malaysia, Philippines and Thailand.

The outstanding debt of the national government now swelled at P9.054 trillion as of end-June 2020, as the country continues to increase borrowings for COVID-19 response and economic recovery, the  (BTr) data showed.

The outstanding government debt as of end-June is 1.8% higher than the end-May, which is P8.890 trillion. The increase was “primarily due to the net issuance and availment of domestic and external financing.”

The BTr report said the end-June 2020 debt level is 15.1% higher compared with the end-June 2019 level of P7.868 trillion. “Compared with end-December 2019 level, the national government debt as of end-June widened by 17.1%.”

The 32% of the outstanding debt of P9.054 trillion was sourced externally while 65% were for domestic sources.