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Wednesday, 25 May 2016

World Bank launches Pandemic Emergency Finance Facility


The World Bank has launched Pandemic Emergency Finance Facility (FEP) to help countries and health agencies fight deadly disease outbreaks. FEP is a financing mechanism designed to quickly mobilize funds to tackle global disease outbreaks and create a new insurance market for pandemic risk. It was unveiled at the G-7 Finance Ministers Summit held in Ise-Shima, Japan. Japanese Government has committed to donate $50 million dollars to it, becoming the first donor. Key facts It was designed and built by World Bank in collaboration with the World Health Organization (WHO) and the private sector reinsurance companies etc. PEF is meant to work almost like an insurance policy, but it will be mainly to protect against deadly disease outbreaks by ensuring “surge funding” to response efforts. The funding will be disbursed according to a complex trigger mechanism and activation criteria based on four categories of infectious diseases. It will provide coverage up to US 500 million dollars for outbreaks of infectious diseases most likely to cause major epidemics for an initial period of 3 years. The major epidemics covered under PEF include new influenza pandemic virus A, B and C, MERS, SARS, Ebola, Crimean Congo, Marburg, Rift Valley, Lassa fever, etc. The insurance window under it will combine the funding from the reinsurance markets with the proceeds of catastrophe or Cat bonds (World Bank issued pandemic bonds) as well as a complementary cash window. It will be for the first time World Bank Cat Bonds will be used to combat infectious diseases.

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