The World Bank (WB) has pledged Tanzania monetary support to mitigate the negative effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The WB supports will mainly be channelled to key economic sectors like tourism, trade as well as the national budget. Finance and Planning Minister, Dr. Mwigulu Nchemba disclosed this after a meeting with the WB Executive Director (ED) - Africa Group 1 Constituency Dr. Taufila Nyamadzabo yesterday, in Dodoma.
Dr. Nchemba said the pandemic has had a great impact on the Government budget due to the economic effects experienced in countries which are trading with Tanzania, thus, affecting the collection of revenues from imports and trade. The global financial institution also vowed to help revamp projects which have been stalled for a long time, including the improvement of secondary education infrastructures.
The Minister, meanwhile, revealed that the country's inflation rate currently stands at between 3 to 5 percent and the national debt remains sustainable. While the novel COVID-19 pandemic has left devastating effects on economies across the world, Tanzania has comparatively fared better, maintaining a relatively steady growth.
The Government's debt to the GDP ratio stands at 27,9 percent whereas the WB debt sustainability threshold is equivalent to 70 percent. Dr. Nchemba lauded the Board of Directors of the World Bank for approving four concessional loans amounting to 1,017 billion US Dollars, equivalent to over 2.3trl/-, to the Government to expedite development projects.
The projects include; improving road infrastructure, improving the teaching and training environment in higher learning institutions, increasing access to quality internet services and expanding access to quality electricity services in Zanzibar. Dr. Nyamadzabo commended the Government for its efforts to uplift the country's development and alleviate poverty.
He urged the Government to continue mobilizing resources for addressing the impacts of COVID-19 as well as use the resources effectively in implementing development projects including those funded by the WB, calling for effective engagement of the private sector in implementing projects in creating more jobs for youth.