S&D spokesperson in the development committee, Udo Bullmann, said:
“This is real progress! The immediate debt service relief for 25 of the poorest and the most vulnerable member countries of the International Monetary Fund is a clear positive example of what concrete and rapid solidarity is about. The IMF board’s decision, taken under the Catastrophe Containment and Relief Trust (CCRT), will now allow them to focus their already limited financial resources on addressing the COVID-19 pandemic.
“This is a remarkable first international example that should pave the way for further similar measures. Hence, we call on the G20 leaders to go in the same direction and facilitate less well-off countries, not only to fight the spread of the virus, but also to cope with the inevitable economic and social consequences.”
Note for editors:
The first countries that will receive debt service relief are Afghanistan, Benin, Burkina Faso, Central African Republic, Chad, Comoros, Congo, D.R., The Gambia, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Haiti, Liberia, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mozambique, Nepal, Niger, Rwanda, São Tomé and Príncipe, Sierra Leone, Solomon Islands, Tajikistan, Togo, and Yemen. The IMF's Catastrophe Containment and Relief Trust (CCRT) was set up to combat the West Africa Ebola outbreak in 2015 and has been repurposed to help countries fend off COVID-19.