On Wednesday, officials from the G20 major economies agreed to freeze debt owed by the world’s poorest countries (Reuters). The measure is aimed to help developing nations focus their spending on healthcare and protecting their vulnerable citizens from the pandemic (AP). An estimated 76 nations will be eligible for the debt deferment, with 40 being in Sub-Saharan Africa (AP). In the midst of the greatest global recession since the Great Depression, the decision is part of a globally coordinated effort to bolster the economy (Reuters).
The World Bank has stated that an “unprecedent effort” is required to help Africa in its fight against the virus (AP). The World Bank stated that without assistance, Africa risks falling into its first recession in a quarter-century (AP). The International Monetary Fund has also decided to cancel the payments of 25 nations for the next six months, many in Africa (BBC). The IMF Managing Director stated a debt relief was in everyone’s interest, “as the global community is as strong as its weakest member in a global pandemic” (Reuters).