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Africa’s Finance Ministers say continent needs emergency $100b financing to fight COVID-19

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After a second virtual meeting held Tuesday March 31, 2020, African Ministers of Finance say the continent urgently needs $100 billion to fight the coronavirus disease sweeping across the world.

In a press release issued by the Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) and copied to ghanabusinessnews.com, it said the meeting hosted by the Executive Secretary of the ECA Dr. Vera Songwe and co-chaired by Tito Mboweni of South Africa and Ken Ofori-Atta of Ghana.

All the ministers agree that Africa’s economy is facing a deep and synchronized slow down and could take up to three years to turn the corner.

They stressed the need to take “all possible actions to slow down and bring the spread of COVID19 under control in the short term but acknowledged this is an uphill battle,” the release said.

Among others, the Ministers indicated the need for longer period for debt relief, noting that the global economy has entered a period of a synchronized slow down, with recovery only expected after about 24 to 36 months.

They therefore urged development partners to consider debt relief and forbearance of interest payments over a two to three-year period for all African countries, Low-income Countries and Middle-income Countries alike.

By Emmanuel K. Dogbevi

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