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Business opportunities for medical devices with the World Bank and other IFIs

02 July 2020

Medical devicesThe World Bank Group, in order to tackle the medical crisis, will be providing up to $ 160 billion over the next 15 months in financing for delivering record levels of support in order to help countries protect the poor and vulnerable, reinforcing health systems, maintaining the private sector, and bolstering economic recovery.

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This assistance, the largest and fastest crisis response in the Bank Group’s history, is to help developing countries respond to the health, social and economic impacts of COVID-19 and the economic shutdown in advanced countries.

In this respect, there are business opportunities for qualified firms to supply much need medical supplies to governments via WB and other IFI business opportunities. An example of the requested materials are, for instance:


  • Gloves, examination
  • Gloves, surgical
  • Goggles, protective
  • Gown, protective
  • Face shield
  • Mask, particulate respirator
  • Mask, surgical

Diagnostic equipment:

  • Lab screening test kit
  • Lab confirmation test kit
  • RT-PCR kit
  • Extraction kit
  • Cartridges for RT-PCR automatic systems
  • Swab and Viral transport medium

Clinical care equipment:

  • Pulse oximeter
  • Concentrator O2, 10L, 230V, 50 Hz + acc.
  • Nasal oxygen cannula, with prongs,
  • Ventilator patient, for adult, pediatric w/acc.
  • CPAP, with tubing and patient interfaces for adult and pediatric, w/acc.
  • Suction pump, mechanical
  • High-flow nasal cannula (HFNC) w/acc

The pandemic that is engulfing the world is forcing individuals, families, firms and governments into making hard choices and taking difficult decisions in order to build up resilience and weather the economic storm.

Companies face liquidity issues as markets become volatile, supply chains less secure and the fear of a global recession looming that is creating uncertainty and reduced levels of investment and spending.

The normal business cycles are being disrupted as the economic consequences of the crisis, well beyond that of the temporary halt that the virus has caused, are becoming evident. The World is sliding very quickly towards one of the worst economic recessions in recent history and possibly even worse than that of 1929. The effect of the 1929, for instance, took several years to fully play out while those of the ongoing crisis only took several months.

The hunt for protective masks, for instance and other medical materials has seen an upsurge in costs, market hysteria and even scams as governments and firms scramble for these necessary articles, often competing among themselves. The market has been well described as that of one where sellers with no goods are operating with buyers with no cash, all within a swamp of a growing number of unqualified brokers and middlemen.

In this rather dark scenario with a humanitarian catastrophe of incredible proportions looming in front of us, the World Bank and other IFIs are stepping up to assist the countries face up to this situation.

On the other hand, the business opportunities with the WB and other IFIs for qualified firms interested in diversifying their markets are very interesting and far away from the chaos that has engulfed other markets.

For firms in other sectors, the World Bank Group and other IFIs operations should be monitored as one could foresee a surge in lending to countries for development projects in several sectors such as health, infrastructure, ICT etc in order to assist countries jump start the economy and
avoid the extreme costs of a prolonged economic depression.