ADB Grants USD 1.5 Billion Loan to India for the Purchase of COVID-19 Vaccines

India has been accepted for a USD 1.5 billion (about Rs 11,185 crore) loan from the Asian Development Bank to purchase the COVID-19 vaccine. An additional USD 500 million is expected to be co-financed for the project by the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB). 

The loan will cover at least 66.7 crore COVID-19 vaccine doses for an estimated 31.7 crore persons. 

It will help India’s National Deployment and Vaccination Plan, which seeks to fully vaccinate 94.47 crore persons aged 18 and above, accounting for 68.9% of the population. 

Healthcare and frontline workers, senior citizens, and those 45–59 years old with comorbidities are among the priority categories. 

Vaccines are crucial for overcoming the pandemic’s linked physical, social, and economic effects, such as reviving economic activity, sustaining health services, restoring livelihoods, and reopening educational institutions, all while refocusing on social and human development priorities. 

ADB is providing technical assistance for USD 4 million (about Rs 30 crore) in the country, including USD 2 million from the Japan Fund for Poverty Reduction. 

This contributes to the improvement of India’s vaccination delivery system. 

This technical assistance initiative aims to improve biomedical waste management monitoring, risk communication, and community participation in order to enhance awareness of COVID-19 proper behavior and vaccination benefits, with a focus on women and vulnerable populations. The World Health Organization (WHO) and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) are working together to give this assistance. 

The project is funded by the Asia Pacific Vaccine Access Facility, which was established in December 2020 with the goal of providing fast and equitable vaccine-related assistance to ADB poor member countries. 

ADB was founded in 1966 and is owned by 68 members, 49 of whom are from the Asia Pacific.