The objective of the Program is to provide the Government of India with budget support to mitigate the severe adverse social and economic impacts caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
This Program is proposed under the COVID-19 Crisis Recovery Facility (the Facility) of the Bank and co-financed with the Asian Development Bank (ADB) as a policy-based loan under ADB’s Countercyclical Support Facility COVID-19 Pandemic Response Option (CPRO). This program will provide critically needed support to help the Government of India mitigate the severe health, social, and economic impacts caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The expected outputs of the program are: (i) implementation of COVID-19 response and health systems measures; (ii) enhancement of measures to provide social assistance for compensating the economic loss to vulnerable groups; and (iii) enhanced social safety measures for the affected workers in both organized and informal sectors.
AIIB’s ESP was designed to apply to investment projects and has no provisions for its application to policy-based lending operations. Accordingly, the proposed Program, which is co-financed with the ADB as lead cofinancier, has been prepared in accordance with the provisions of ADB’s SPS applicable to policy-based lending as permitted by AIIB’s Board of Directors’ Decisions to Support the AIIB COVID-19 Crisis Recovery Facility. This will ensure a harmonized approach to addressing the environmental and social (ES) risks and impacts of the Program.
Under its SPS, ADB has categorized the Program as Category C for environment, involuntary resettlement, and Indigenous Peoples on the basis of an assessment of the countercyclical expenditures to be supported by the Program. These focus on expanding and strengthening social safety nets for the most vulnerable groups and are not expected to have any adverse environmental or social impacts. The proposed Program has also been categorized by ADB as “effective gender mainstreaming at entry”, as it strengthens the government’s response to the COVID-19 outbreak by addressing gender and social inclusion needs. ES monitoring will be conducted based on guidelines and check lists determined by ADB.
Dr. Prasanna V Salian
Department of Economic Affairs
Ministry of Finance