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Debt relief must deliver on ambitions

The IMF and WB are calling on the G20 to support debt relief for impoverished countries in the face of the COVID-19 outbreak. But the institutions must break with the past to ensure debt relief fulfils its purpose. The COVID-19 pandemic is an exceptional crisis and potentially implies devastating legacy impacts for many impoverished countries. Global policy responses to deal with the economic fallout must therefore break with precedent and also ensure a reinforcement of longer-term development priorities. The call for a moratorium on official bilateral debt by the Bretton Woods Institutions is welcome, and could be a significant measure in securing fiscal breathing space for countries battling against the consequences of the COVID-19 outbreak. But for some countries, such a standstill may not ...

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COVID-19 and debt in the global south: Protecting the most vulnerable in times of crisis I

Daniel Munevar

26 Mar 2020 12:44:49

This is the first part of a blog series covering the impact of COVID-19 on vulnerable countries in the global south. Part 1 analyses the impact of debt burdens on health services. Part 2 discusses how the economic crisis will affect countires in the global south. Part 3 highlights the degree of vulnerability of countries in the global south to the COVID-19 pandemic. Part 4 provides a discussion on policy responses to tackle the risks posed by the pandemic.  Download the methodological annex here The human and economic toll of COVID-19 is a stark reminder of the fragility of our globalised society. Countries’ ability to contain the outbreak across borders is being defined by their capacity to provide effective protection to the most vulnerable. Until now, more than 98 per cent of ...

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COVID-19 and debt in the global south: Protecting the most vulnerable in times of crisis IV

Daniel Munevar

19 Mar 2020 12:06:46

Prepared by Daniel Munevar and Mark Perera This is the fourth part of a blog series covering the impact of COVID-19 on vulnerable countries in the global south. Part 1 analyses the impact of debt burdens on health services. Part 2 discusses how the economic crisis will affect countires in the global south. Part 3 highlights the degree of vulnerability of countries in the global south to the COVID-19 epidemic. Part 4 provides a discussion on policy responses to tackle the risks posed by the epidemic.  COVID-19 poses a serious set of threats to Low-Income Economies (LIEs). The most vulnerable in the global south will require substantial support from the international community to tackle the public health and economic risks posed by the epidemic. As we touched upon in the previous ...

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COVID-19 and debt in the global south: Protecting the most vulnerable in times of crisis III

Daniel Munevar

16 Mar 2020 11:55:35

This is the third part of a blog series covering the impact of COVID-19 on vulnerable countries in the global south. Part 1 analyses the impact of debt burdens on health services. Part 2 discusses how the economic crisis will affect countires in the global south. Part 3 highlights the degree of vulnerability of countries in the global south to the COVID-19 epidemic. Part 4 provides a discussion on policy responses to tackle the risks posed by the epidemic.  Eurodad analysis of the interplay between health, trade and financial factors shows the high degree to which countries in the global south are vulnerable to a systemic crisis. Within a sample of 69 LIEs, it is estimated that at least 84 per cent have vulnerable health care systems (58 countries)1 ; 80 per cent present trade vulnerabilities ...

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COVID-19 and debt in the global south: Protecting the most vulnerable in times of crisis II

Daniel Munevar

13 Mar 2020 12:58:41

This is the second part of a blog series covering the impact of COVID-19 on vulnerable countries in the Global South. Part 1 analyses the impact of debt burdens on health services. Part 2 discusses how the economic crisis will affect countires in the global south. Part 3 highlights the degree of vulnerability of countries in the global south to the COVID-19 epidemic. Part 4 provides a discussion on policy responses to tackle the risks posed by the epidemic. Download the methodological annex here Healthcare challenges posed by COVID-19 to countries in the global south are heightened by economic factors. Even if these countries manage to avoid large outbreaks, they will still be exposed to the economic fallout of the epidemic, putting them at risk of a debt crisis. Available estimates suggest ...