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Viewpoint by Daniel Munevar *

Covid-19 is not the only pandemic ravaging across the Global South. A debt pandemic threatens to prevent developing countries' recovery, writes Daniel Munevar, an eminent debt justice advisor. This article was originally published in the Journal of International Politics and Society issued by the German Friedrich-Ebert Foundation's Brussels office.

BRUSSELS (IDN) — Without a doubt, the Covid-19 pandemic represents the most severe developmental setback in recent history. But while the virus is still ravaging across the Global South, it's not the only pandemic currently engulfing developing countries. In fact, a debt pandemic threatens to prevent them from achieving a meaningful—let alone sustainable—recovery.

Photo: Waiting in line for vaccine. Credit: Raphael Alves/IMF Photos

By David Amaglobeli, Vitor Gaspar, and Paolo Mauro*

This article was first published on April 1 with the title Giving Everyone a Fair Shot. It is also available in عربي, 中文, Español, Français, 日本語, Português, Русский

WASHINGTON, DC (IDN | IMF Blog) — The COVID-19 pandemic is intensifying the vicious circle of inequality. To break this pattern and give everyone a fair shot at prosperity, governments need to improve access to basic public services—such as health care (including vaccination) and education—and strengthen redistributive policies.

For most countries, this would require raising additional revenue and improving the efficiency of spending. These reforms must be complemented by greater transparency and accountability, which can help increase overall trust in government and contribute to more cohesive societies.

Photo: Drivers of the colourful and traditional 'jeepneys' have been among the hardest-hit populations in the Philippines. Credit: Dan Olanday.

Viewpoint by Champa Patel*

LONDON (IDN) – Southeast Asia already had a poor human rights record before the COVID-19 outbreak. Despite ASEAN’s rhetoric on democratic values and human rights, illiberal democracies have been on the rise, putting fundamental freedoms in the region under pressure. Most countries across the region continue to criminalise dissent using draconian often colonial-era laws, or new repressive legislation. COVID-19 has intensified these trends.

Photo: ECOSOC's 2020 Operational Activities Segment (OAS) on development issues took place through a series of virtual meetings from 19 to 22 May and on 27 May 2020, under the chairmanship of the Deputy Permanent Representative of Mexico, as ECOSOC Vice-President.  Credit: UN

By Elena Marmo, Global Policy Watch (GPW)

This article first appeared in the GPW's blog.

NEW YORK (IDN) – Across the UN System, all hands are on deck to address the impact of COVID-19 from immediate humanitarian and health needs, to medium and longer-term socio-economic policy. Various initiatives are circling one another, raising issues of governance, reporting and accountability. Member States in the ECOSOC Operational Activities Segment explored some of these questions as they related to the UN Development System (UNDS). At the same time, in the 28 May and 2 June meetings on Financing for Development, they also explored policy ideas, with an emphasis on accounting for vulnerability in macroeconomic analysis.


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IDN-InDepthNews offers news analyses, features, reports and viewpoints that impact the world and its peoples. It has been online since 2009. Its network spans countries around the world.

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