Economic, social transformation needed to tackle COVID-19 crisis in LA

Xinhua News,SANTIAGO
2020-10-07 12:14

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SANTIAGO, Oct. 6 (Xinhua) -- Latin America must "maintain and deepen active macroeconomic policies" to achieve economic and social transformation under COVID-19, the United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) said on Tuesday.

"The COVID-19 pandemic is having historic negative effects in economic, productive and social spheres, with lasting consequences and medium-term effects on growth and increased inequality, poverty and unemployment," ECLAC's executive secretary Alicia Barcena said in a press conference.

"In this scenario, active macroeconomic policies will be needed to resume growth and to promote an agenda for structural transformation," she added, recommending strengthening public revenue, maintaining conventional and non-conventional expansionary monetary policies, and other measures.

In addition, "international cooperation is fundamental here to expand macroeconomic policy space," said Barcena, during the presentation of ECLAC's annual report "Economic Survey of Latin America and the Caribbean 2020."

The report offers an analysis of the economic effects of the pandemic in each country of the region and offers policy recommendations for addressing them, especially in fiscal and monetary matters.

According to the report, Latin America and the Caribbean is experiencing its worst economic crisis in a century, with an estimated 9.1 percent contraction in regional gross domestic product (GDP).

As a result, by the end of 2020, the level of GDP per capita will be the same as it was in 2010, meaning "there will have been a 10-year setback, with a sharp increase in inequality and poverty."
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