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Health News

Europe to provide Mozambique with $116 million in virus aid

FILE PHOTO: European Union flags flutter outside the European Commission headquarters in Brussels, Belgium August 21, 2020. REUTERS/Yves Herman

MAPUTO (Reuters) - The European Union (EU) has agreed to provide Mozambique with 100 million euros ($116.30 million) in coronavirus-related aid, EU Ambassador Antonio Sanchez-Benedito Gaspar said on Monday.

The EU cut off direct budget support to Mozambique in 2016 after the country revealed the existence of hefty state-guaranteed loans that it had not previously disclosed. A number of other donors including the International Monetary Fund also halted aid to Mozambique.

Sanchez-Benedito Gaspar told a press conference in the capital Maputo that the agreement had “different characteristics” to the direct budget support the EU used to provide, and was focused specifically on helping with the socio-economic consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We are happy to have carried out this specific two-year program, for an amount of 100 million euros,” he said, adding the agreement was covered by monitoring and transparency clauses.

Mozambique had reported 13,130 cases of the coronavirus as of Monday, with 94 deaths.

($1 = 0.8598 euros)

Reporting by Manuel Mucari; Editing by Emma Rumney and Sonya Hepinstall

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