The African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) has announced a $3-billion facility, named Pandemic Trade Impact Mitigation Facility (PATIMFA), to help African countries deal with the economic and health impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.
PATIMFA, approved by the bank’s Board of Directors during its sitting on March 20, will provide financing to assist Afreximbank member countries to adjust in an orderly manner to the financial, economic and health services shocks caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, according to information released by the bank.
It will support member country central banks, and other financial institutions to meet trade debt payments that fall due and to avert trade payment defaults, said Afreximbank. It will also be available to support and stabilise the foreign exchange resources of central banks of member countries, enabling them to support critical imports under emergency conditions.
In addition, PATIMFA will assist member countries whose fiscal revenues are tied to specific export revenues, such as mineral royalties, to manage any sudden fiscal revenue declines as a result of reduced export earnings. It will also provide emergency trade finance facilities for import of urgent needs to combat the pandemic, including medicine, medical equipment and hospital refitting.