Islamabad, 8 May 2020
Ambassador of the European Union to Pakistan Androulla Kaminara meets with Prime Minister Imran Khan:
EU and Pakistan, Side by Side: 26 billion PKR from EU to face COVID-19
Ambassador of the European Union to Pakistan, HE Androulla Kaminara met with Prime Minister Imran Khan today to reiterate the EU’s commitment to support Pakistan during and beyond the Covid-19 crisis. She presented the 26 billion PKR Covid19 package that the EU has put together in support to Pakistan. Ambassador Kaminara and the Prime Minister also discussed how Pakistan and the EU can further benefit from a stronger political partnershipin light ofthe political, economic and security developments.
Ambassador Androulla Kaminara said: “A longstanding friend and partner of Pakistan, the European Union stands side by side with Pakistan as the country faces the extraordinary challenge of the COVID-19 pandemic. The EU is convinced that the global pandemic requires global solidarity and cooperation. I very much appreciate the constructive discussion with Prime Minister Imran Khan and I am looking forward to continued collaboration during and beyond the current crisis.”
The Prime Minister briefed the Ambassador on the government’s vision and action to fight Covid19. Ambassador Kaminara lauded the governments’ efforts, including the scale-up of the Ehsaas programme for the most vulnerable and poor.Shepointed out the opportunities of the partnership with the EU as major trade partner and key donor in Pakistan.
The European Union is directing€150 million(26 billion PKR; 163 MUSD) towards theshort and medium term response in the emerging health crisis in Pakistan and into strengtheningthe preparedness of Pakistan’s people for its social and economic impact, with a specific focus on the most vulnerable.
The package and the EU’s overall long-standing support to Pakistan are to be seen in addition to EU Member States’ generous co-funding of the lending and operational capacity of multilateral institutions currently assisting Pakistan and numerous other countries around the world in addressing the crisis.
Milko van Gool, Head of Cooperation at the Delegation of the European Union to Pakistan explained: “The EU and its 27 Member States, as #TeamEurope, are collaborating on a comprehensive response to help Pakistan address the challenges related to Covid19. We are working closely with the Pakistani government and our partners to make sure our assistance intervenes where it is most needed and where it can make the biggest difference to help the Pakistani people in this crisis.”
The packagecovers a wide range of measures for the short and medium term:
More information on the European Union’s fight against the Corona Virus, also consult:
For further details, please contact:
Saad Yusuf Mustafa
Press and Information Officer
Delegation of the European Union to Pakistan
Office: House 9, Street 88, G-6/3, Islamabad
Phone: +92 51 227 1828, Fax: +92 51 282 2604
Annex: Further facts and figuresabout #TeamEurope’s global Covid-19 response
The partnership between the EU and Pakistan was enhanced and confirmed in June 2019 through a new Strategic Engagement Plan. The Strategic Engagement Plan provides a comprehensive political framework in the areas of peace and security, democracy, the rule of law, good governance and human rights, migration and mobility, trade and investment, sustainable development, education and culture, and science and technology.
The EU’s financial support to Pakistan takes place through the EU budget (more than € 1 billion since 2007) and through bilateral programmes of its member states, most notably Germany and France.
Financial cooperation between the EU and Pakistan focuses on a wide range of areas, ranging from joint work on shared values in governance, human rights and democracy to key social and economic areas.
The latter include sustainable economic development esp. in rural areas; small business development; energy and electrification; water management; improvement of public finance management; technical and vocational training. The empowerment of women is a crosscutting theme throughout all our work.
This support will continue both at the federal level and in the provinces and prove to be of vital importance as Pakistan addresses the social and economic impact of the pandemic going forward.
To fight the coronavirus on a global scale, the EU, its Member States, the European Investment Bank and European Bank for Reconstruction and Development announced on 8 April 2020 more than €20 billion to partner countries’ efforts in tackling the pandemic. The European Commission is redirecting more than €15.6 billion of existing funds previously allocated to our partners to tackle immediate needs, both humanitarian and in the health care sector, strengthen the health, water and sanitation systems of partner countries, and support research, and to address the economic and social consequences.
The EU’s response follows a #TeamEurope approach, combining resources from the EU, its Member States and financial institutions, including the European Investment Bank, to support each partner country.Team Europe (#TeamEurope) is the tangible expression of the European resolve to express our global solidarity and make all efforts to act as one when helping our partners in these turbulent times. Team Europe will closely coordinate with international fora (G7/G20/Paris Club) and global partners (UN, World Bank, International Monetary Fund, World Health Organisation, Red Cross) to further strengthen the global response.
A ‘Joint communication on Global EU response to COVID-19’ includes a proposal with a breakdown by region of the overall package of €15.6 billion:
The following contains further information about the EU’s involvement in and financial contribution to the lending and operational capacity of multilateral institutions currently assisting Pakistan and numerous countries around the world in addressing the crisis, most notably the IMF, the World Bank, the United Nations organisations and a number of global funds addressing health, education and vaccines.
The EU’s support to International Financial Institutions
Explanations: The IMF’s current total resources amounting to about SDR 978 billion translate into a capacity for lending or “firepower” of about SDR 715 billion (around US$ 1 trillion). This total is based on three components constitutive of this lending capacity and where EU27 Member States contributions are: 26,2% of quotas, 44% of bilateral borrowing arrangements and 29% of new borrowing arrangements). More here
In response to COVID, the IMF is making available about $50 billion through its rapid-disbursing emergency financing facilities for low income and emerging market countries that could potentially seek support. Of this, $10 billion is available at zero interest for the poorest members through the Rapid Credit Facility. The EU Member States share based on the various component of this package is about 28% of the total USD 50 billion. More here
Explanation: The World Bank has adopted a $14 billion COVID-19 Response package, including 8 billion from IFC, 2,7 from IBRD, $1.3 billion from IDA, complemented by reprioritization of $2 billion of the Bank’s existing portfolio;. Based on the various components of the package the European share of this response is at least $3.5 billion (24,2% IFC, 23,11% IBRD, 26,3% IDA). More here
World Bank trust funds are financing arrangements with contributions from one or more donors, which can include the World Bank Group. They fund a wide range of projects and activities, either free standing or programmatic, and can be country-specific, regional or global in scope.Financial Intermediary Funds (FIFs) are financial arrangements that typically leverage a variety of public and private resources in support of international initiatives, enabling the international community to provide a direct and coordinated response to global priorities. Most FIFs have supported global programs often focused on the provision of global public goods, including preventing communicable diseases. World Bank hosted FIFs focusing on health include the International Finance Facility for Immunisation (IFFIm), Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria (GFATM), Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI), Advance Market Commitment (AMC), the Pandemic Emergency Financing Facility. More here
Overall IFI Response
So far, the largest multilateral and regional development banks and financial institutions have announced or mobilised close to USD 88 billion in loans, grants, and bonds to support effort fighting the COVID‑19 pandemic. At least 22% of this global IFI effort is imputable to the EU27 (around USD 20 billion).
Explanation: The 27 EU MS contribute 23.94% of the assessed contributions to the UN regular budget (US 22% and China 12%) and 23.85% of the peacekeeping budget (US 27.68% but pays only 25%, and China 14.45%).
International Health Funds
Global Fund to Fight HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria (GFATM)
The EU has also pledged €475 million to the Global Fund to Fight Aids, Tuberculosis, Malaria for 2019-2022. On 9 April, the Board of the Global Fund unanimously approved a new response mechanism to support countries to respond to COVID-19 and mitigate the impact on programs to fight HIV, TB, malaria and systems for health. The COVID-19 Response Mechanism authorizes funding of US$500 million and comes in addition to up to US$500 million in grant flexibilities.
Under WHO guidance, the Global Fund strongly encourages countries to take prompt action to mitigate the potential negative consequences of COVID-19 on existing programs supported by Global Fund grants. Activities under the new COVID-19 guidelines include, but are not limited to, epidemic preparedness assessment, laboratory testing, sample transportation, use of surveillance infrastructure, infection control in health facilities, and information campaigns.
Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance
The EU contributes to global health initiatives with €1.3 billion until 2020, including €200 million to the Vaccine Alliance and Global Financial Facility (GAVI), for the current strategic period 2016-2020. In March, the Gavi Board agreed to make available up to US$ 200 million of its funding for health systems to help countries respond to the COVID-19 pandemic. Gavi is considering further extending its array of support beyond the immediate response to help countries recover more quickly.
Gavi will provide US$ 29 million in urgent initial funding to 13 lower-income countries to support their response to COVID-19, helping them to protect health care workers with personal protective equipment (PPE), perform vital surveillance and training, and fund diagnostic tests.
International Education Funds
Global Partnership for Education
The EU has contributed €475 million to the Global Partnership for Education (GPE) from 2014-2020. The GPE established an internal COVID-19 Task Force and immediately released US$8.2 million to UNICEF to support countries with planning and preparedness.
On April 1st, a further US$250 million was allocated to support countries to mitigate both the immediate and long-term implications of COVID-19 on education.
Education Cannot Wait Fund (ECW)
The EC has contributed €21 million to date to the Education Cannot Wait Fund, a global multilateral fund dedicated to education for children affected by conflict, protracted crises and disasters. Together with Member States, EU funding accounts for 38% of ECW funding.
Education Cannot Wait used their reserves to allocate US$23 million to 26 countries to the COVID-19 response, to include health protocols in school opening/closing, distance learning and psycho-social support for vulnerable children. They have issued a call for an additional US$50 million to respond to immediate funding gaps.
 For details, see the Annex.