o far, Belize's costly COVID-19 response has received not a single dollar of international funding. The Prime Minister says he hopes 6 million plus from the IDB will come at the end of this month.
Well, the Caribbean Development Bank has announced that it will also contribute. A release says the CDB is making emergency loans to seven Caribbean countries for a total of $66.7 million US dollars. Antigua and Barbuda will get US$13 million, Belize will get US$15 million, Dominica will get US$2.5 million, Grenada will get US$5.9 million, Saint Lucia, US$10.8 million, St. Vincent and the Grenadines US$11.3 million, and Suriname US$8.2 million.
The funds will be to respond to COVID-19 and keep critical government services and operations running, The emergency loans are being made under CDB's most concessionary terms, will, quote, "provide vital liquidity and increase governments' fiscal space to allow these countries to promptly meet their urgent financing needs without diverting resources away from critical social expenditures or health emergency needs."
According to CDB projections, many of these countries will fall into recession this year.
Real GDP is expected to decline in Belize by 5.4%. The release concludes, "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."Channel 7