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24 July 2020, 09:06

Lukashenko approves €90m loan agreement with IBRD to respond to COVID-19

MINSK, 24 July (BelTA) – Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko has approved the loan agreement between Belarus and the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) to finance Belarus Emergency COVID-19 Response Project. Decree No. 292 was signed by the president on 23 July, BelTA learned from the press service of the Belarusian head of state.

In line with the agreement, the IBRD will provide €90 million to the National Center of Medical Technologies, Informatization, Management and Economy of Public Health. The money will be used to purchase equipment for intensive care departments and ambulance services, to buy 20 computed tomography scans, personal protective equipment and medicines, as well as test kits to diagnose the infection.

For example, intensive care departments will receive 460 ventilators, 350 anesthesia breathing systems, 200 CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure) machines, 800 patient monitors, 30 mobile X-ray machines, 22 continuous renal replacement therapy machines.

The ambulance services will receive 50 mobile intensive care ambulances, ventilators, defibrillator/monitoring devices.

A special account will be opened at Belinvestbank to receive the loan. There will be certain tax and customs preferences for companies executing the loan agreement.

The agreement will help raise additional funding to finance measures to prevent, diagnose and treat the coronavirus infection, to strengthen the country's national healthcare system and improve the quality of healthcare services.

A reminder, the €90m loan agreement to finance Belarus Emergency COVID-19 Response Project was signed on 1 June 2020 by Belarusian Healthcare Minister Vladimir Karanik and Alex Kremer, head of the World Bank's Country Office in Belarus.

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