NASSAU, BAHAMAS — The Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) has approved a US $20 million loan to the government of The Bahamas to acquire the COVID-19 vaccine and help develop the infrastructure around its distribution, its president said yesterday.
The project is intended to strengthen response leadership at the country level, improve case detection and monitoring, support initiatives to break the illness’s transmission chain and improve service delivery capacity. The IDB recently announced that it will mobilize $1 billion to help Latin American and Caribbean countries acquire and distribute COVID-19 vaccines.
Speaking on the project, IDB president Mauricio Claver-Carone said: “This will facilitate access to the vaccine, it will also create an executing agency for it that is going to strengthen the Ministry of Health.”
“Of that $20 million, $4.5 million is to be directly allocated to the purchase of the vaccine and the remainder will go towards the infrastructure surrounding its distribution. We feel very confident. We have been working very closely with the Bahamian authorities in order to execute this plan. We don’t want it to be reactive, we want to be proactive,” said Claver-Carone.
He further noted that The Bahamas is one of its strongest partners in this endeavor, adding that if more funding is required, the IDB is willing to be flexible and provide additional funding.