Colombia receives disbursement from World Bank to support COVID-19 response

As part of its response to the COVID-19 emergency, on March 31, the Colombian government received a disbursement of US$250 million from a development policy loan, better known as CAT DDO, from the World Bank. Colombian authorities had declared a State of National Emergency on March 17 to address the health crisis.

“We are committed to Colombia at this time of the health emergency and providing quick support to the government with this injection of funds for the well-being of the entire population,” said Ulrich Zachau, Director of the World Bank for Colombia and Venezuela. “We also recognize the vision of Colombia since 2009 to include financial tools to strengthen its capacity in situations as critical as those we are experiencing today.”

The CAT DDO is a contingent loan that countries subscribe to in advance to be financially prepared in the event of a disaster or health emergency, and it is immediately disbursed. The CAT DDO is part of the country’s disaster risk finance strategy.

World Bank Group COVID-19 Response

The World Bank Group is rolling out a $14 billion fast-track package to strengthen the COVID-19 response in developing countries and shorten the time to recovery. The immediate response includes financing, policy advice and technical assistance to help countries cope with the health and economic impacts of the pandemic. The IFC is providing $8 billion in financing to help private companies affected by the pandemic and preserve jobs. IBRD and IDA are making an initial US$6 billion available for the health-response. As countries need broader support, the World Bank Group will deploy up to $160 billion over 15 months to protect the poor and vulnerable, support businesses, and bolster economic recovery.

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