Saudi Fund for Development (SFD) has signed its first development loan agreement worth $75 million with Saint Lucia in order to fund the “Reconstruction and Rehabilitation of St. Jude Hospital Project”.
This agreement is part of SFD’s efforts to support sustainable development in developing countries and Small Island Developing States (SIDS).
Furthermore, the signing marks SFD’s first presence in Saint Lucia, making it the 90th nation to receive funds from SFD for a development project.
According to the statement, “SFD’s funding of the reconstruction and rehabilitation of St. Jude Hospital came as a much-needed response after its reconstruction, following a fire in 2009, was abandoned for three years, between 2016-2019. This placed the availability of healthcare services for St. Lucia’s population at risk.”
SFD’s development loan will help to provide an integrated medical facility offering secondary medical care to Saint Lucia’s population, with a capacity of approximately 100 beds.
The project will also involve renovating the hospital’s southern, eastern, and western wings, as well as its sub-buildings. As part of this, the hospital will be equipped with state-of-the-art facilities, including a pharmacy, maternity wards, accident and emergency department, and operating rooms for surgery, among others that will help to deliver excellent healthcare services to Saint Lucia’s population.
The hospital’s rehabilitation will also improve climate resistance capabilities throughout the facility, improving its durability and resilience. The development cooperation reaffirms the importance of international cooperation and solidarity to achieve sustainable development goals and foster economic and social growth.
Mr. Sultan Al-Marshad, Chief Executive Officer of the Saudi Fund for Development, said that, “Today’s agreement signifies an important step in the development cooperation between both countries. The project to reconstruct and rehabilitate St. Jude Hospital will not only help empower local communities but also contribute towards strengthening the health sector’s capacity to cater to the requirements of Saint Lucia’s residents and the surrounding areas.”
Since operations began in 1975, SFD has implemented more than 700 development projects and programs in 89 countries around the world.