IDB funds COVID-19 recovery in T&T

IDB funds COVID-19 recovery in T&T

Coronavirus Loans Debt Regulation Trinidad & Tobago Caribbean United States

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The Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) said Wednesday that it granted a $100 million loan for Trinidad and Tobago to finance its response to the COVID-19 pandemic and promote an economic recovery after the health crisis has passed.

Trinidad and Tobago will use part of the money to support household income and business liquidity during the pandemic through tax refunds, salary grants, food stamps and rental assistance. It will also use the loan to buy medical equipment and hire medical staff, the IDB said in a press release.

The loan will also go to implementing the Fair Trading Act (FTA), which involves promoting competition in local markets, lowering the cost of essential goods for consumers and increasing private sector productivity, according to the IDB.

The 20-year, dollar-denominated loan comes with a 5.5-year grace period and charges an interest rate based on Libor, the IDB said.

Trinidad and Tobago has secured a total of $124 million in financing from the IDB to pay for its response to the COVID-19 pandemic, along with $150 million from the Latin American development bank CAF, $20 million from the World Bank and $500 million from external sources, according to the IDB.

Earlier this month, the IDB granted a $50 million loan for urban development programs in Trinidad and Tobago, including money for low-income housing.