World Bank delivers US$5.1m to support Samoa’s COVID-19 response
Apia, SAMOA — The World Bank has delivered US$5.1 million in immediate funding to support Samoa's response to the global COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic. The funds will support Samoa's efforts to prepare and manage its response to COVID-19.
Samoa currently has no confirmed COVID-19 cases, however, a State of Emergency is now in place across the country.
"Protecting Samoan people from COVID-19 is our absolute priority," said the Hon. Sili Epa Tuioti, Samoan Minister of Finance. "While we remain fortunate that we currently have no confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Samoa, it is critical that we are as prepared as possible. This support from the World Bank will be an essential part of these preparations and will ensure we can respond swiftly in the event of a confirmed case."
"The World Bank stands shoulder-to-shoulder with Samoa, and with the whole Pacific region, at this time of need," said Michel Kerf, World Bank Country Director for Papua New Guinea & the Pacific Islands. "This funding is the first in a series of support that our team is now working to deliver in Samoa and across the Pacific in response to the unprecedented challenge of COVID-19.
Earlier this month, the World Bank Group announced a US$14 billion COVID-19 response package to support the global community response to this global pandemic. The package supports developing countries to strengthen health systems, including improving access to health services to safeguard people from the epidemic, strengthen disease surveillance, bolster public health interventions, and work with the private sector to reduce the impact on economies. The World Bank is now working to provide urgent support to Pacific countries through this package.