The COVID-19 pandemic and the economic shutdowns are dealing a severe blow to the global economy and especially poorer countries.
Developing countries and the international community can take steps now to speed recovery after the worst of the health crisis has passed and blunt long-term adverse effects, according to analytical chapters released today from the World Bank Group’s Global Economic Prospects report.
Short-term response measures to address the health emergency and secure core public services will need to be accompanied by comprehensive policies to boost long-term growth, including by improving governance and business environments, and expanding and improving the results of investment in education and public health.
To make future economies more resilient, many countries will need systems that can build and retain more human and physical capital during the recovery – using policies that reflect and encourage the post-pandemic need for new types of jobs, businesses and governance systems.
The analysis has been released ahead of the June 8 issuance of the full report, which will include the Bank Group’s latest forecasts for the global economy.
“The scope and speed with which the COVID-19 pandemic and economic shutdowns have devastated the poor around the world are unprecedented in modern times.
“Current estimates show that 60 million people could be pushed into extreme poverty in 2020.
“These estimates are likely to rise further, with the reopening of advanced economies the primary determinant,” said World Bank Group President David Malpass.
“Policy choices made today – including greater debt transparency to invite new investment, faster advances in digital connectivity, and a major expansion of cash safety nets for the poor – will help limit the damage and build a stronger recovery.
“The financing and building of productive infrastructure are among the hardest-to-solve development challenges in the post-pandemic recovery.
“We need to see measures to speed litigation and the resolution of bankruptcies and reform the costly subsidies, monopolies and protected state-owned enterprises that have slowed development.”