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Ruchir Agarwal and Ms. Gita Gopinath
Urgent steps are needed to arrest the rising human toll and economic strain from the COVID-19 pandemic that are exacerbating already-diverging recoveries. Pandemic policy is also economic policy as there is no durable end to the economic crisis without an end to the health crisis. Building on existing initiatives, this paper proposes pragmatic actions at the national and multilateral level to expeditiously defeat the pandemic. The proposal targets: (1) vaccinating at least 40 percent of the population in all countries by the end of 2021 and at least 60 percent by the first half of 2022, (2) tracking and insuring against downside risks, and (3) ensuring widespread testing and tracing, maintaining adequate stocks of therapeutics, and enforcing public health measures in places where vaccine coverage is low. The benefits of such measures at about $9 trillion far outweigh the costs which are estimated to be around $50 billion—of which $35 billion should be paid by grants from donors and the residual by national governments potentially with the support of concessional financing from bilateral and multilateral agencies. The grant funding gap identified by the Access to COVID-19 Tools (ACT) Accelerator amounts to about $22 billion, which the G20 recognizes as important to address. This leaves an estimated $13 billion in additional grant contributions needed to finance our proposal. Importantly, the strategy requires global cooperation to secure upfront financing, upfront vaccine donations, and at-risk investment to insure against downside risks for the world.
International Monetary Fund. Western Hemisphere Dept.

Abstract

The pandemic continues to spread in Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC), but economic activity is picking up. After a deep contraction in April, activity started recovering in May, as lockdowns were gradually eased, consumers and firms adapted to social distancing, some countries introduced sizable policy support, and global activity strengthened.

Authorities
Mozambique’s economy is at a turning point, and efforts to address governance and corruption vulnerabilities can have a lasting positive impact. The current levels of public debt have caused us to take a hard look at our governance and anti-corruption framework and have prompted various reforms to address the vulnerabilities exposed in this framework. In general, the problems in our society, and specifically corruption, have been examined in detail recently and are clearly macro-critical.2 One study estimated the costs of corruption to Mozambique during the period 2002 to 2014 at up to USD 4.9 billion (approximately 30 percent of the 2014 GDP).3 The impact of these costs is widespread, affecting taxpayers, public service providers, the financial and private sector, as well as Mozambique’s international reputation.4 These costs are especially harmful at a time when our country has been hit by a series of shocks, notably the fall in commodity prices, drought, the withdrawal of donor budget support, and, more recently, Tropical Cyclones Idai and Kenneth. At the same time, Mozambique stands poised to reap significant revenues from natural resource reserves, and our duty as the government is to ensure the responsible stewardship of those funds for both current and future generations. By taking meaningful steps now to implement the governance and anti-corruption framework in an evenhanded, consistent, and effective manner, and to support efforts toward transparency and individual and institutional accountability, as the government, we can aim to achieve enduring results.