Finance Minister hails Bahrain’s financial and economic stimulus package
TDT | Manama
Finance and National Economy Minister Shaikh Salman bin Khalifa Al Khalifa yesterday highlighted the pre-emptive and precautionary measures taken by the government of Bahrain to mitigate the impacts of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. The minister was speaking in a virtual high-level meeting entitled “Initiative on Financing for Development in the Era of COVID-19 and Beyond”.
Leaders of various countries and heads of governments participated in the event, held on the sidelines of the 75th session of the UN General Assembly (UNGA 75). Shaikh Salman bin Khalifa cited the launch of the financial and economic stimulus package consisting of more than 20 initiatives worth more than US$11 billion, or the equivalent of a third of the Kingdom’s GDP.
These initiatives include the payment of 100% of the salaries of Bahraini employees through the Unemployment Insurance Fund and the suspension of fees on the sectors adversely affected by the pandemic It aims to protect jobs, provide the necessary liquidity for the private sector, and ensure the stability of the labour market and all economic sectors, he said.
Shaikh Salman bin Khalifa affirmed that Bahrain’s Economic Vision 2030 had played a major role in diversifying the economy and supporting innovation in a way that achieves growth and prosperity for all citizens. He underlined the importance of taking financial measures that would contribute to mitigating the economic effects of the pandemic through the optimal use of financial resources.
The minister noted that Bahrain has adopted the Fiscal Balance Programme for the sake of achieving the balance point by 2022, and is continuing to implement its initiatives in order to reach the desired goal. The Finance Minister noted that the COVID-19 pandemic has drawn attention to the importance of the role of technology and digitization in promoting economic sustainability, and made it necessary for everyone to accelerate digital transformation.
The Finance Minister also expressed the Kingdom’s appreciation of the UN and its initiatives aimed at mitigating the effects of COVID-19. Shaikh Salman bin Khalifa pointed out that the pandemic and the economic challenges resulting from it require continued work and joint cooperation among all countries in order to overcome it and achieve global economic recovery.
He stressed the importance of continuing such joint co-operation and coordination among all countries. The meeting also discussed the latest financial and economic developments and implications related to the pandemic and its impact on the economic sectors and global economy