The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has approved a €174 million loan for Albania to cover immediate needs caused by losses and disruptions to the economy due to the coronavirus pandemic and the November 2019 earthquake.
The funds will be immediately available for Albania to respond effectively to COVID-19 by strengthening health care and mitigating the effects on the sectors and households most affected by the crisis, according to the IMF.
The loan was approved by the Executive Board of the IMF under the Rapid Financing Instrument (RFI), a more flexible way for urgent loans that does not require a full-fledged economic program or reviews.
In the press release, the IMF notes that economic activity in Albania may be significantly contracted in 2020, followed by a rebound in 2021.
Deputy Managing Director and Acting Chair of IMF, Tao Zhang stated that “It will be critical to ensure adequate spending for healthcare and support for the people and firms that are hurt by the COVID-19 pandemic.”