COVID-19 Relief: ITFC unveils $850m emergency funding for Islamic nations

JEDDAH As the COVID-19 pandemic is posing an unprecedented challenge to the global economy, International Islamic Trade Finance Corporation ITFC, is set to provide $850 million in emergency financing to mitigate the socio-economic risks faced by OIC member countries. Jeddah-based ITFC is an autonomous entity within the Islamic Development Bank Group (IsDB).

“ITFC has moved quickly to put in place emergency financing measures to ensure that member countries continue to receive the support needed. Our COVID1 9 ‘Rapid Response Initiative’ (RRI) has made $300 million immediately available,” ITFC CEO, Hani Salem Sonbol, said in a statement.

These funds are being directly funneled towards eligible OIC member countries in most need of support – for critical supplies of energy, healthcare, food security and other life support requirements. ITFC is in continuous consultations with OIC member countries to ascertain their most pressing needs as the pandemic unfolds, the organisation said in a statement.

An additional fund – the ‘Recovery Response Program’ (RRP) – earmarks another $550 million for deployment over the next two years. The RRP is aimed at fixing the socio-economic damage which is expected to last longer than immediate impact of the virus.

ITFC stated that it is actively engaging international, regional and local partners as a strategic means of scaling these interim financing measures to contribute to the critical needs of the member countries and where necessary, on the mobilization of trade development support services during the pandemic.—Agencies