Africa Health Advice Science 

Bill Gates: How to respond to COVID-19

In any crisis, leaders have two equally important responsibilities: solve the immediate problem and keep it from happening again. The COVID-19 pandemic is an excellent case in point. The world needs to save lives now while also improving the way we respond to outbreaks in general. The first point is more pressing, but the second has crucial long-term consequences. The long-term challenge—improving our ability to respond to outbreaks—isn’t new. Global health experts have been saying for years that another pandemic rivalling the speed and severity of the 1918 influenza epidemic…

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Development Health Advice 

COVID-19: UN donates quarter of a million face masks to NYC health workers

In a statement, Mr. Guterres said that the face masks are part of UN stocks, deemed surplus to requirements, and are currently located in United Nations facilities in New York. The UN chief praised medical professionals in New York City who, he said, have been working “courageously, selflessly, and tirelessly in response to the spread of COVID-19 across the boroughs,” in a reference to the five boroughs into which the City is administratively divided (Manhattan, Queens, The Bronx, Brooklyn and Staten Island). Mr. Guterres went on to express his hope…

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Development Health Advice 

COVID-19: UN envoy hails strong Israel-Palestine cooperation

Mr. Mladenov’s comments were made during a telephone conversation with the other members of the Middle East Quartet, a body set up to mediate the Israeli-Palestinian peace process. It is made up of representatives of the European Union, Russia, the USA, and the United Nations.  During the call, which took place on Thursday, Mr. Mladenov gave a detailed briefing on the UN COVID-19 response plan, focusing mainly on Gaza, where there is a substantial risk of the disease spreading.  In a statement released on Friday, the coordination and cooperation established…

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Development Health Advice 

Critical work of UN ‘largely uninterrupted’, despite unprecedented challenge of COVID-19

In his welcoming remarks, the UN General Assembly President underscored the value of safety and solidarity in the face of a crisis that has affected practically every corner of the globe. “Although we are not sitting together, be rest assured that we are in this together”, said Tijjani Muhammad Bande. “We must lead by example. We must stay at home, abide by social distancing recommendations, wash our hands, and look out for one another”. Mr. Bande reported that thanks to technology, the General Assembly’s Fifth Committee was able to make…

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Development Health Advice 

Protect ‘healthcare heroes’ from COVID-19, urges UN rights expert

“Their tireless work and self-sacrifice show the best of humanity”, said Baskut Tuncak, Special Rapporteur on the implications for human rights of the environmentally sound management and disposal of hazardous substances and wastes.  Hailing the healthcare workers as “heroes” who “must be protected”, he stressed that unacceptable shortages in critical protective equipment that can stop them from being infected, continue to plague nearly all nations battling the new coronavirus.  Moreover, low-income countries have even fewer resources, including the necessary protection for their healthcare providers.  “Public and private funds are urgently needed…

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Investments 

African Development Bank launches record breaking $3 billion “Fight COVID-19” Social Bond

The African Development Bank (AAA) has raised an exceptional $3 billion in a three-year bond to help alleviate the economic and social impact the Covid-19 pandemic will have on livelihoods and Africa’s economies.   The Fight Covid-19 Social bond, with a three-year maturity, garnered interest from central banks and official institutions, bank treasuries, and asset managers including Socially Responsible Investors, with bids exceeding $4.6 billion. This is the largest Social Bond ever launched in international capital markets to date, and the largest US Dollar benchmark ever issued by the Bank.…

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Investments 

Zimbabwe: African Development Bank approves $8.25 million loan to food producer Olivine Industries

The Board of Directors of the African Development Bank Group has approved a $8.25 million corporate loan to Olivine Industries Limited to support the company’s food production expansion plan in Zimbabwe. The Bank’s loan, approved on Wednesday, will enable the company to construct new processing plants for margarine and tomato sauce and install upgraded machinery with advanced technologies. Olivine plans to increase its domestic and regional production capacity and food supply. “With this transaction, the Bank will provide long-term hard currency financing in the Zimbabwean market, and create a strong…

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Development Health Advice 

A sustainable global economy must arise once COVID-19 pandemic is reversed, UN chief tells G-20 summit

They will also expand manufacturing capacity to meet the huge and increasing demand for medical supplies, which will be made available at an affordable price and in the shortest possible time, pledged the leading economic powers. The UN Secretary-General, the world’s top diplomat, was among those taking part, stressing that “we are at war with a virus – and not winning it”. Make no mistake: #COVID19 anywhere is a threat to countries and people everywhere. The magnitude of our response must match the scale of the crisis. My remarks to…

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Development Health Advice 

Life-saving vaccinations must not ‘fall victim’ to COVID-19 pandemic – UNICEF chief

As health workers are diverted to support the response, “physical distancing is leading parents to make the difficult decision to defer routine immunization”, Henrietta Fore said in a statement on Thursday, adding that flight cancellations and trade restrictions have “severely constrained access to essential medicines, including vaccines”. “As the pandemic progresses, critical life-saving services, including immunization, will likely be disrupted, especially in Africa, Asia and the Middle East, where they are sorely needed”, she stated, highlighting that children from the poorest families in conflict and natural disaster-affected countries were at…

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Investments 

Ethiopia: African Development Bank-funded water project spurs youth entrepreneurship, transforms “one life at a time.”

In a single day last July, Ethiopians turned out in huge numbers to plant more than 350 million trees in what was thought to be the largest tree-planting event in history. It was part of an ambitious national reforestation program to plant 4 billion trees across 1.5 million hectares nationwide over three months. Ethiopia’s “Green Legacy” tree planting blitz gave 19-year old Mamu Alemu an idea: to start a tree nursery on land next to his family’s home. An African Development Bank-funded water scheme in his town of Tefki gave…

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