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India coronavirus: $22bn bailout announced for the poor

March 27, 2020 6:32 am

India has announced a $22bn (£19bn) bailout for the country’s poor to help counter the economic effects of the Covid-19 outbreak.

“We don’t want anyone to remain hungry, and we don’t want anyone to remain without money in their hands,” finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman said.

The package, which includes free food and cash transfers, was for “those who need immediate help”, she said.

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She also said health workers would get medical insurance of up to $66,500.

Correspondents point out that this amounts to just 1% of India’s GDP – in stark contrast to the US and Singapore which are spending about 10% of their GDP on similar packages.

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