Beijing-backed AIIB approves $750 million loan to India’s for coronavirus response

Beijing-backed Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) has approved a loan of $750 million to help India battle the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on vulnerable households, the bank said on Wednesday.

In a release, AIIB said that the loan, co-financed with the Asian Development Bank will be aimed at bolstering economic id for businesses, expanding social safety nets for the needy and strengthening the country’s health care systems.

“India is extremely vulnerable to the pandemic given that around 270 million people continue to live below the national poverty line and around 81 million live in densely populated informal settlements with limited access to health services,” the release stated.

In May, AIIB approved a $500 million loan to assist India’s emergency response to the pandemic. Both loans are part of a $10 billion funding facility the AIIB has announced to help public and private sectors fight the outbreak.

AIIB’s total sovereign loans to India that have already been approved amount to $3.06 billion, including a recent $500 million COVID-19 emergency response. The current loan will be the second for India under AIIB’s COVID-19 Crisis Recovery Facility (CRF).

AIIB is extending such financings on an exceptional basis under the CRF to support its members through projects cofinanced with the World Bank or the Asian Development Bank (ADB).

AIIB, headquartered in Beijing, began operations in 2016 as a multilateral development bank with a mission to improve social and economic outcomes in Asia.