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(Barbados Today) – The Barbados-based Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) is putting $280 million (US$140 million) at the disposal of regional governments to fight the economic and social fallout from COVID-19 and other disasters.

In a statement on Friday, the CDB’s president Dr. Warren Smith said: “The economic and social shock of the COVID-19 pandemic will likely be severe in most Caribbean countries. There is the additional concern that the situation could be exacerbated in the near future given our Region’s vulnerability to natural disasters, and with the hurricane season less than two months away. We, at CDB, stand ready to assist Caribbean countries to alleviate these shocks.”

The CDB boss also expressed concern about the region’s vulnerability.

With the imminent 2020 hurricane season, Smith said the CDB stands ready to assist the region to alleviate these shocks.

The CDB is often the main partner that a number of the borrowing member countries rely on for financing, technical assistance and policy advice during crises.

“The US$140 million allocation is the first of a package of assistance that CDB is developing to assist our Borrowing Member Countries to cope with COVID-19. Our financing and technical assistance, during this period, will be directed mainly towards the most vulnerable within our societies and give the highest priority to strengthening social safety nets,” stressed Smith.

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