Tanzania secures nearly $600M from IMF for COVID relief
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has agreed to provide Tanzania with $567 million in emergency support to help the country finance a Covid-19 vaccination campaign and deal with the health and social costs of the pandemic. The IMF board approved the disbursement on Tuesday under its Rapid Credit Facility and its Rapid Financing Instrument. The Covid-19 outbreak and associated travel restrictions have affected Tanzania greatly and led to the collapse of the tourism industry in the country. Tanzania had previously denied the existence of the pandemic under the late president John Magufuli.
After his death in March, President Samia Suluhu Hassan took power. Hassan acknowledged the crisis, which caused a major deceleration to 4.8% growth in 2020. Growth is expected to remain subdued in 2021. The new funding will allow Tanzanian officials to address urgent health, humanitarian, and economic costs of the pandemic as well as provide vaccines to the public. According to the IMF, the funds will also help the country to mobilize additional support from development partners.