Developing Countries: Coronavirus

Department for International Development written question – answered on 1st September 2020.

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Photo of Preet Kaur Gill Preet Kaur Gill Shadow Secretary of State for International Development

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, how much her Department has disbursed to multilateral institutions in response to the covid-19 pandemic; and how much of that aid has reached the Global South to date.

Photo of Wendy Morton Wendy Morton Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Foreign and Commonwealth Office) (Joint with the Department for International Development)

The UK is playing a leading role in the international response to the Covid-19 pandemic, pledging up to £774 million of UK aid to help developing countries (the 'global south') address the immediate and longer-term impacts of the crisis. Of the £774 million, £220 million has gone to UN agencies in the UN's Global Humanitarian Response Plan (GHRP), such as the World Food Programme and UN Refugee Agency, as well as humanitarian organisations such as the Red Cross and international NGOs. DFID is also adapting its programmes across its country network to respond to COVID-19 and address the needs of the most vulnerable, as outlined in the GHRP. This funding will help address urgent needs in vulnerable countries, accelerate progress towards a vaccine, reinforce infection control and help the poorest countries address the economic impact of the crisis.

On 4 June, the UK hosted the Global Vaccine Summit, where world leaders, foundations, corporations and organisations pledged $8.8 billion for Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance. The UK remains Gavi's largest donor, having pledged £1.65bn for 2021-25 to help strengthen health systems in the global fight against COVID-19 and immunise a further 300 million children in the world's poorest countries against other deadly diseases. We are a leading donor and shareholder to the multilateral development banks, which have announced financial packages totalling more than £200bn. Given the unprecedented high demand for rapid finance, the UK has doubled its pledge from £2.2bn to £4.4 billion to IMF loan resources for concessional lending to low-income and vulnerable developing countries, and pledged up to £150m to the IMF Catastrophe Containment Relief Trust for the poorest countries to receive debt relief on IMF repayments.

We will continue to work closely with our multilateral partners and fora such as the G7 and G20 to galvanise the global fight against Covid-19 and shape the multilateral response to ensure it addresses the needs of the world's poorest and most vulnerable.

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