The Council of Europe Development Bank (CEB) approved a €150 million loan to Latvia to support the government’s policies to contain the outbreak of COVID-19 and ease budgetary pressures on the public health care sector.

The Latvian authorities have already approved measures totalling €1.8 billion to help fight the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic. These include the acquisition of disposable protective equipment, medical supplies, and non-invasive ventilators.

The funds provided by the CEB will provide support in the area of health care, aimed at protecting medical personnel involved in the prevention and treatment of COVID-19 as well as other persons working in high-risk environments; supporting vulnerable groups such as families with children; and ensuring the continuity of essential services in the country.

Minister of Finance Jānis Reirs commented: “The CEB has extensive and very good previous experience collaborating with the Latvian authorities to support budgetary lines of expenditures.”

The Governor of the CEB, Rolf Wenzel, said: “The CEB is providing timely support to Latvia to help it deal with COVID-19 and stands ready to work with the authorities on the road to recovery. The CEB can play an important role in supporting projects that promote inclusive growth and sustainable development in the aftermath of the crisis.”