The Japanese government, on Sunday, extended a COVID-19 Crisis Response Emergency Support Loan worth USD 47.5 million (JPY 5 billion) to the Maldives.
During a ceremony held at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ambassador of Japan to Maldives Keiko Yanai and Minister of Foreign Affairs Abdulla Shahid signed the Exchange of Notes for the loan.
According to the Japanese embassy, the concessional loan comes with a fixed annual interest of 0.01 per cent for 15 years.
“This is virtually a zero-interest rate loan because it is an emergency support loan to the government of the Maldives for the people of Maldives”, said Ambassador Yanai.
Speaking at the signing ceremony, she noted that the loan was extended as Japan wanted to contribute towards alleviating the high fiscal stress caused by the social and economic impact on the Maldives due to the prolonged pandemic.
Japan expressed hopes that this financial assistance will enable the government to scale up its on-going efforts to strengthen the capacity to respond to COVID-19 pandemic and revitalize its socio-economic activities.
Considered one of the three Asian giants, Japan had extended support to the island nation’s COVID-19 response in various forms prior to the aforementioned loan as well.
The country previously extended grants totalling up to USD 7.5 million for the Maldivian government to equip and improve health services at atolls and regional hospitals, support small and medium enterprises in agri-businesses affected by COVID-19 and to complement the state’s efforts to respond to COVID-19.
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Source URL: Google News