The New Development Bank of the Brics group of nations has approved a loan of over R14 billion to government to support an economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.

In a statement, the bank says the loan will support government in its efforts to contain the economic fallout of the pandemic and start economic recovery.

South Africa is currently in the midst of its first phase of the COVID-19 vaccine programme, targeting workers in the healthcare sector. The second phase, targeting the elderly and essential workers, is expected to begin on May 17th.

The latest loan is South Africa’s fourth since the outbreak of the virus and a second from the New Development Bank.

In June last year, the Brics group bank gave Pretoria R17.3 billion COVID-19 loan. That one had been preceded by loans from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the African Development Bank. South Africa has so far secure more than R90 billion financial assistance to mitigate the impact of the virus.

Economist Dr Azar Jammine speaks on SA’s economic status since its first lockdown: