World Bank earmarks $490 mn for Madagascar

The Bank will provide a grant of 100 million euros to help the Indian Ocean island purchase vaccines and boost its health system, Economy Minister Richard Randriamandrato told AFP.

FILE: People have coffee in Antananarivo in Madagascar's. Picture: AFP.

ANTANANARIVO, Madagascar - The World Bank has earmarked a total of $490 million (416 million euros) to help Madagascar buy COVID vaccines and finance development projects, the two sides announced on Wednesday.

The Bank will provide a grant of 100 million euros to help the Indian Ocean island purchase vaccines and boost its health system, Economy Minister Richard Randriamandrato told AFP.

Madagascar wants to vaccinate more than half of its adult population by the end of 2022, "a goal that is ambitious but not impossible," the World Bank's local representative, Marie-Chantal Uwanyiligira, said.

Another $40 million, in the form of an emergency grant, will finance sustainable and innovative agriculture, particularly in irrigation.

The Bank has also set aside $150 million to help tourism, agribusiness and the digital economy, which are seen as having promising growth potential, and $200 million to maintain 1,200 kilometres (750 miles) of roads and strengthen their resistance to climate change.

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