THE Governments and Japan yesterday signed Exchange of Notes to formalise a multi-million dollar loan arrangement to support the Government’s efforts against COVID-19.
The loan totaling over $190 million targets promoting economic stabilization and developmental responses against the pandemic.
Called the “COVID 19 Crisis Response Emergency Support” the loan will be available under the COVID 19 Rapid Response Program co-financed by the Asian Development Bank (ADB).
Once disbursed, the loan will support and cater for budgetary expenditures incurred during COVID-19. The loan will be made available by a loan agreement to be concluded between the two Governments through the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA).
The duration of repayment is eleven years at an interest rate of 0.01 percent after a grace period of four years.
The 0.01 interest rate per annum and the disbursement period will be one year after the date the loan agreement come into force.
Following this signing of the Exchange of Notes, the Ministry of Finance and Treasury (MoFT) and JICA will subsequently enter into a loan agreement.
Minister of Foreign Affairs and External Trade Jeremiah Manele and Japanese Ambassador Morimoto Yasuhiro signed the Exchange of Notes on behalf of the two Governments.
“I would like to sincerely thank the government and the people of Japan for this support. This support will greatly assist the government in its work to fight against COVID 19 at all fronts,” Minister Manele said.
The “COVID-19 Crisis Response Emergency Support Loan” is a new chapter in the cordial bilateral relationship between our two countries,” he added.
“Japan is committed and will continue to work together with the Government of Solomon Islands to ensure that the assistance provided will Support the sustainable economic development and improving the living standard through the assistance for the economic and the social sectors to minimise the impact of COVID-19,” said Ambassador Yasuhiro.
Yesterday’s is only to formalise the arrangement between the two governments.
The actual Loan Agreement will be signed soon between the Solomon Islands Government and JICA and there after the disbursement of the loan.