Monday, March 30 2020 16:32
Marianna Mkrtchyan

European Commission will provide financial assistance to its partners  in fight against Covid-19

European Commission will provide financial assistance to its partners  in fight against Covid-19

ArmInfo. As part of the global response to the coronavirus outbreak, the European Commission stands by Eastern partner countries and has reallocated 140 million  EUR for the most immediate needs in Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus,  Georgia, the Republic of Moldova, and Ukraine. In addition, the  Commission will also redirect the use of existing instruments worth  up to 700 million EUR to help mitigate the socio-economic impact of  the coronavirus crisis, the official website of  the Organization  informs.  

Commissioner for Neighbourhood and Enlargement Oliver Varhelyi said:  "These are very difficult times not only for the EU, but for our  partner countries as well. We are doing all we can to mitigate the  impact of the coronavirus outbreak on human lives and livelihoods. We  are responding both to the immediate needs of the health systems, as  well as longer term needs to the most vulnerable groups in society  and small and medium-sized enterprises, which are the backbone of the  economies in the six countries".  

At the request of the partner countries, the Commission will respond  to immediate needs by supporting the supply of medical devices and  personal equipment, such as ventilators, laboratory kits, masks,  goggles, gowns, and safety suits. The European Commission is working  with the World Health Organisation (WHO), and is deploying 30 million  EUR to ensure these necessary supplies are jointly purchased and  effectively distributed to the health systems of the six countries in  the coming weeks. In addition, the funds will support national health  administrations to train medical and laboratory staff and carry out  awareness raising measures to the wider population.  The Commission  has also made available more than 11.3 million EUR in small grants to  civil society organisations. These funds are already responding to  immediate needs, through the ongoing regional "Rapid Response  Mechanism", such as supporting local schools with distance learning.   By the summer, and as part of this package, the Commission will  launch the "Eastern Partnership Solidarity Programme" which will  target the most affected parts of the populations through civil  society support and notably sub-grants to smaller, local  organisations.

The Eastern Partnership program was launched by the EU in 2009. Its  main goal is the development of regional cooperation with six  countries: Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova and  Ukraine.

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