The World Bank’s board of directors on Thursday approved $506 million in emergency loans and grants for Ecuador to help the country grapple with one of the worst coronavirus outbreaks in Latin America, the Bank said in a statement.
President Lenin Moreno thanked the World Bank and said the money will be critical in getting the nation’s economy back on its feet following the coronavirus crisis. He also announced that Ecuador will receive a $300 million loan from the Latin American Development Bank.
The World Bank aid includes a flexible $500 million loan to help Ecuadorian authorities cover budget needs during the crisis and to promote economic recovery. It is a variable-spread loan with a 28-year maturity period and an 11-year grace period.
The outbreak of the novel coronavirus and plummeting oil prices and global demand are having a devastating effect on oil-producing Ecuador.
The Bank’s aid package also includes a $6 million non-reimbursible grant from its Global Concessional Financing Facility. The funds will be used to support Ecuador’s efforts to aid its Venezuelan migrant population and the Ecuadorian population that has received the refugees.
The Bank said the $500 million recognized the Ecuadorian government’s efforts “to achieve fiscal sustainability, strengthen dollarization, improve transparency and accountability, and promote responsible public debt management.”
The World Bank’s aid comes days after the executive board of the International Monetary Fund approved $643 million in emergency financing for Ecuador. Including the Latin American Development Bank loan, Ecuador will receive more than $1.4 billion by the end of May.