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FAST-TRACK APPROVALS


Loans to El Salvador, Mozambique and Pakistan T


he OPEC Fund has approved public sector loans of


US$35 million and US$50 million to support COVID-19 response efforts in El Salvador and Pakistan, respectively. A US$50 million private sector loan was also approved to help boost energy access in Mozambique. All loans were approved via the OPEC Fund’s fast- track process, adopted to ensure finance reaches those who need it most, quickly and effectively. The loan to El Salvador will benefit


approximately 6,000 micro-, small-, and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs). This strengthens the El Salvadoran government’s special trust fund, channeled through the National Development Bank of El Salvador (BANDESAL), to provide support that includes subsidy programs for employees of MSMEs, loans to small- and medium-sized


enterprises (SMEs) and a financing program for entrepreneurs as well as micro- and small-sized traders in the informal sector. The Inter-American Development Bank, the World Bank and the Central American Bank for Economic Integration are also co- financing the program. A US$50 million loan to Pakistan will help finance the government’s program to strengthen health infrastructure and social safety nets and provide a counter-cyclical fiscal stimulus. This will include the provision of COVID-19 testing kits and protective equipment, cash assistance to 12 million families and daily wage workers in the industrial sector who lost their jobs, the purchase of 8.2 million tons of wheat, subsidies for agricultural businesses and SMEs, and financing for industry and


exporters. Co-financiers include the Asian Development Bank, the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and bilateral donors. Under its Private Sector and Trade


Finance Facility, the OPEC Fund also approved a US$50 million loan to help boost energy access in Mozambique.


In El Salvador, 6,000


MSMEs will benefit from the loan


32


PHOTO: Kobby Dagan/Shuttetstock.com


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