SAARC Development Fund allocates five million dollars for COVID-19 projects

Kathmandu, April 7

The SAARC Development Fund has allocated USD five million for COVID-19 projects in SAARC member states under its Social Window to support member countries in responding to COVID-19 pandemic.

“The objective of the USD 5 million allocation is to provide fund support to member states in their efforts and to protect the people of SAARC member states by mitigating financial losses and severe socio-economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic,” said CEO of SDF Sunil Motiwal in a press release issued today.

As the virus continues to spread globally, the eight SAARC member states — Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka — have reported more than 8,282 confirmed cases of Coronavirus till yesterday.

India has reported 4,281 cases, Pakistan 3,403, Afghanistan 299, Sri Lanka 178, Bangladesh 88, Maldives 19, Nepal 9 and Bhutan 5, according to World Health Organisation.

This COVID-19 project will be funded by SDF under its Social Window thematic areas. In keeping with SDF Charter Article 4 Section 2, Social Window shall primarily fund projects on poverty alleviation and social development focusing on education, health, human resource development, support to vulnerable/ disadvantaged segment of society, funding needs of communities, micro-enterprises and rural infrastructure development.

CEO Motiwal said that all eligible project proposals submitted to SDF shall be reviewed and due diligence would be ensured.“The approval process, project implementation, fund disbursement, management, monitoring and reporting shall be as per the existing SDF-Board approved policy, and practices of SDF and Social Window,” he said.

A version of this article appears in e-paper on April 08, 2020 of The Himalayan Times.