CDB to provide almost US$67 million to seven Caribbean countries to counter the COVID-19 crisis

Caribbean countries are especially vulnerable to the global outbreak due to their heavy dependence on tourism for income and employment. According to CDB estimates, many of these countries, including those, which will be supported with emergency loans, will fall into recession this year. Real gross domestic product will decline in Antigua and Barbuda (1.5%), Belize (5.4%), Dominica (2.9%), Grenada (10%), Saint Lucia (9.1%), and St. Vincent and the Grenadines (4.8%). Suriname, heavily dependent on gold production and export, was also severely hit and the economy almost brought to a complete standstill. Its economy is forecast to contract by 3% in 2020.

It is expected that the social impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic will be significant, stemming from an increase in unemployment, and loss of income and livelihoods, as well as substantial disruptions of social services, with women, female heads of households and children, persons with disabilities, indigenous peoples, and migrants as the most vulnerable groups.

CDB’s response to COVID-19 to date tops US$200 million, with US$140 million that can be used by the Bank’s Borrowing Member Countries to tackle the fallout of the pandemic as well as any other shocks to their economy and US$3 million for the purchase of personal protective equipment.

Funding agencies: Caribbean Development Bank (CDB)

Countries: Barbados, Belize, Dominican Republic, Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica

Published: 2020-05-20

Sectors: Health