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The Center for Global Development’s communications team is standing by to assist reporters on deadline. Our experts can provide analysis, commentary, data, and unique expertise on the global development and economic issues that are driving the news cycle. You can search for experts by their area of expertise here. To arrange an interview or to be added to our press list, please contact Eva Grant, press secretary, by phone or email at +1-202-416-4027 and firstname.lastname@example.org.
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From the article:
"In Africa, Beijing was eager to fill the vacuum left when U.S. and European interest in the continent waned following the end of the Cold War. Governments there were hungry for loans not tied to austerity programs imposed by Western financial institutions, and China was quick to approve credit, with scant concern about the money going to regimes accused of corruption or human-rights violations. 'For China, as the newest power on the block, the only region of the world that was uncontested was Africa,' says Gyude Moore, Liberia’s former minister of public works and now a senior fellow at the Center for Global Development in Washington. 'When people complain about Chinese loans, it’s not as if most African countries have a plethora of options.'"
From the article:
"Estudiosos y expertos del Comité Latinoamericano de Asuntos Financieros (CLAAF por sus siglas en inglés) dieron a conocer este miércoles sus conclusiones sobre las medidas que deberían adoptar los países de la región sudamericana para hacer frente a la grave crisis económica derivada por la pandemia del coronavirus.
La pandemia ha causado grave estragos en todos los sectores financieros. Analistas de organizaciones como el Fondo Monetario Internacional (FMI) o el Banco Mundial (BM) han puesto sus miradas hacia América Latina al considerar que esa región tardará mucho más tiempo en recuperarse que otras zonas geográficas del planeta...
Liliana Rojas-Suárez, la directora de la Iniciativa Latinoamericana en el Centro para el Desarrollo Global (CGDEV por sus siglas en inglés) señaló que el coronavirus está teniendo un evidente impacto en 'el comercio, en el precio de los bienes, en el turismo y en las remesas.'"
From the article:
"What’s more, some health-care workers say they have not been paid in two months, and have stopped coming to work as a result. This problem vexed the Ebola response as well, leading to strikes among health-care workers. 'Since they never paid us what they owed us during Ebola, I’ve decided not to risk my life again for COVID,' says Christopher White, an ambulance driver at Kenema Hospital. A report from the Center for Global Development, a think tank in Washington DC, projects that such problems are likely to grow worse as shutdowns and trade disruptions owing to COVID-19 damage the economies of low-income countries. Current trends suggest that falling economies will translate into a reduction of US$2 billion in the health budgets of all low-income countries between 2020 and 2024."
From the letter:
This rather technical letter has been put together by Jamie Drummond and some eminent economists and just sent to the world’s leading finance ministers. It outlines what should be agreed by the Group of 20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors - the world’s money men and women - when they meet virtually this weekend. They will be discussing the crucial matter of financing humanity’s fight against COVID-19 and its huge negative impacts on our shared Global Goals of equality and sustainability.
It is crazy how much money many of the most vulnerable nations and citizens are still spending repaying debts, cash which they should be able to put into health, education and humanitarian needs. It is incredible that we could accelerate our collective global exit from COVID-19 potentially by years, saving millions of lives and trillions of dollars, for the price of just two days of this pandemics impact. And yet our money managers – for that’s what these finances ministers are - have not yet invested that money in our collective future safety, when they are literally sitting on the money. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank already have the financial firepower to deal with a lot of these life and death issues. Our finance ministers are the major shareholders in these institutions, and we need to ask them to instruct the IMF and World Bank to use that power. They just need some moral imagination and motivation. That’s where you come in.
There is a way forward. But will Rishi Sunak of the UK or Bruno Le Maire of France or Tito Mboweni of South Africa or Steve Mnuchin of the USA or others around the digital table be able to show the leadership needed on debt, vaccines or investing in educational transformation for the next generation? We need a new financing deal to invest in beating COVID-19, future pandemic prevention, the existentially essential energy transition and the economically essential education sector’s recovery – so that all citizens have access to the tools they need to lead lives of dignity, opportunity and resilience to future risks. Two places you can take action are at ONE.org on debt and 350.org for a wider healthy, just and green recovery..."
From the op-ed:
"Why has it been so hard for the rich countries to generate the political consensus to go beyond business as usual and challenge the international institutions and themselves to rise to this unprecedented crisis?
It may be because the virus has appeared to advance more slowly in many developing countries than initially feared; or because the threat of their economic collapse is not as easy to visualize as Covid-19 deaths; or because there is pressure to prioritise financial support for people at home also struggling and concerned about the uncertainty ahead.
And yet, it would be a mistake to ignore the problems brewing abroad, particularly in low income countries and fragile states. It is here that the poorest, most vulnerable members of our global community are most likely to be found. Unless the international community acts to help them now, we should be prepared for human tragedies far more brutal and destructive than the direct health impacts of the virus."
Contact: Eva Grant Center for Global Development email@example.com +1.202.416.4027
Refugee-hosting countries will experience less growth in 2020 due to the pandemic
WASHINGTON, DC - Refugees are more likely to work in sectors financially impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, and refugee-hosting countries are projected to experience slower growth in 2020, new analysis released by the Center for Global Development, Refugees International, and the International Rescue Committee finds.
In this analysis, authors calculated and compiled estimates from eight large refugee-hosting countries with available representative data: Colombia, Ethiopia, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, Peru, Turkey, and Uganda. The data analyzed are largely from 2015-2019, where researchers could extract comparable statistics across countries. This paper represents the largest quantitative cross-country comparison of refugees: 10.64 million, or 37 percent of all refugees worldwide.
The researchers found that the main hosting countries will fare worse economically post-2020, compared with other developing nations and world averages. Specific findings include:
60 percent of employed refugees work in highly-impacted sectors, relative to 37 percent of host populations.
Refugees are therefore 60 percent more likely than host populations to work in sectors of the economy impacted most by COVID-19.
Only 7 percent of refugees work in the least impacted sectors, like education and public administration, compared to 19 percent of hosts.
Refugee women are at a particular disadvantage; in the Latin America and sub-Saharan Africa regions where refugee women are most likely to work, they are over-represented in highly impacted sectors.
The 15 low- and middle-income countries with the largest refugee populations were growing slower than other low- and middle- income countries before the pandemic and are projected by the IMF to experience almost equal declines in 2020.
“Refugees tend to be disproportionately affected by this crisis, because so few work in the less-affected sectors like education, public administration, health, and agriculture,” Helen Dempster, CGD’s Assistant Director and Senior Associate for Policy Outreach for Migration, Displacement, and Humanitarian Policy, says. “Both legal and practical barriers often prevent refugees from getting the land or citizenship required of more recession-proof work.”
“Expanding economic inclusion for refugees is necessary to reduce the negative impacts of this and future pandemics,” Refugees International’s Labor Market Access Program Assistant Martha Guerrero Ble said. “Labor market access in hosting countries can reduce the spread of the pandemic, provide more ‘essential workers,’ and stimulate the economic recovery for the benefit of the population as a whole.”
“Within host countries, refugees face barriers to entering the formal workforce and are often excluded from social safety nets and other work-related benefits,” said Barri Shorey, senior director of economic recovery and development, International Rescue Committee. “Now as COVID-19 wreaks havoc across economies, the cracks are further showing. The most vulnerable are disproportionately impacted and those refugees who have been able to make progress, have been sent back to worry about meeting their most basic needs. Building back from COVID-19 must work for everyone. In doing so, refugees can regain their livelihoods and host countries can benefit from newfound economic growth”.
The paper is available here, along with appendix data: https://www.cgdev.org/publication/locked-down-and-left-behind-impact-covid-19-refugees-economic-inclusion.
About CGD: The Center for Global Development is an independent, nonpartisan, nonprofit organization that works to reduce global poverty and improve lives through innovative economic research that drives better policy and practice by the world's top decision makers. https://www.cgdev.org/page/about-cgd
About Refugees International: Refugees international advocates for lifesaving assistance and protection for displaced people and promotes solutions to displacement crises. We do not accept any government or UN funding, ensuring the independence and credibility of our work. Learn more at www.refugeesinternational.org and follow us on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.
About IRC: The International Rescue Committee responds to the world’s worst humanitarian crises, helping to restore health, safety, education, economic wellbeing, and power to people devastated by conflict and disaster. Founded in 1933 at the call of Albert Einstein, the IRC is at work in over 40 countries and over 20 U.S. cities helping people to survive, reclaim control of their future, and strengthen their communities. Learn more at www.rescue.org and follow the IRC on Twitter & Facebook.
Contact: Jeremy Gaines
Center for Global Development
+1 (202) 416-4058
On the news that the Trump Administration has formally notified Congress of its intent to withdraw the US from the World Health Organization (WHO), Amanda Glassman, executive vice president and a senior fellow at the Center for Global Development and a public health expert, released the following statement:
“The Trump Administration’s actions to withdraw from the WHO endanger public health and well-being in the United States and around the world.
“The threat is not just COVID-19 today. There has been a notable rise in the frequency of pandemics from the year 2000 onwards due to increased viral disease amongst animals and high levels of human mobility essential for prosperity at home and abroad. The likelihood of a new coronavirus emergence in the next five years is considered likely given what we are seeing with SARS-CoV-2 mutations and spread to other species. The probability of a high lethality strain of influenza in the next decade or so is also significant, the only uncertainty is the timing. Resistance to antibiotics and antivirals is also on the rise, and requires global coordinated action to conserve these medicines that make modern health care possible. Other, still unknown biosecurity threats are also on the horizon.
“COVID-19 has already cost more than 130,000 American lives and is projected to result in $8 trillion in economic losses in the US over the next decade. The human and economic impact of this and future outbreaks do not depend only on what the US does domestically, but what every country in the world does to detect early, to conduct on-going high-quality surveillance and laboratory testing, to share disease intelligence from genomic sequences to interventions, to control spread, and to conserve medical countermeasures like antibiotics. The WHO is the agency mandated to coordinate these global functions under the supervision and governance of its board of member countries.
“As has now been shown in sharp relief, the WHO lacks the necessary funding and full capabilities needed to effectively control the global spread of infectious diseases. Failures and weaknesses throughout the international system, including WHO but also national governments who design multilateral institutions for short-term benefit, have led us to where we are today.
“Yet none of the corrective measures needed at WHO will be accomplished without US membership in good standing. Withdrawal is counterintuitive at best and dangerous to human life at worst. The US Congress should immediately explore what power it has to prevent this from happening.”
Contact: Sean Bartlett Center for Global Development firstname.lastname@example.org +1.202.821.2947
Jessica Turner Center for Global Development email@example.com
Sweden takes top spot; France, Norway, UK, Germany finish out top 5
Turkey, South Africa, Chile demonstrate growing influence
US, China: Large gap between economy size, development funds made available
LONDON – The Center for Global Development (CGD) released the 17th edition of its Commitment to Development Index (CDI) Thursday, which measures and compares how effectively countries–relative to their economy size–support development in other countries. Central to the CDI is the importance of national policies that go beyond just foreign aid, grouped in seven components: Development Finance; Investment, Migration, Trade, Environment, Security, and Technology.
CDI 2020 also incorporates a number of measures on global health, which are highly relevant to the COVID-19 pandemic as well as future pandemics. These include indicators on a country’s R&D, efforts to fight antimicrobial resistance, and ability to prevent, detect, and respond to disease security threats.
This year, Sweden ranks number one in the world in its commitment to development.
“Foreign direct aid itself is an incredibly important resource for poorer nations, but good development policy and practice take into account a country’s holistic approach, ranging from how they treat migrants, encourage trade, fight climate change, and more,” said Masood Ahmed, president of CGD. “That’s the value-add of the Commitment to Development Index and why it remains an important, wide-ranging dashboard for policymakers planning future development budgets in wealthy and emerging economies alike.”
“This year we have expanded the coverage of the CDI to include the emerging donors who are an increasingly important part of global development,” Ahmed added.
Historically, the CDI focused on the OECD Development Assistance Committee (DAC) countries and included some of the G20. In preparation for CDI 2020, CGD revised its methodology and expanded its analysis to include 40 countries engaged in substantial global development practices, including all the G20 countries and major economies from beyond the group. Given this expansion and the inclusion of emerging economies, CDI 2020 includes an “income adjusted” ranking for better comparison purposes.
“The Commitment to Development Index 2020 underscores that the policy and funding decisions of major economies within and beyond the G20, make a huge difference in the development of poorer nations,” said Ian Mitchell, senior policy fellow at CGD and the lead researcher of the CDI. “Using the CDI, one can draw clear conclusions on how policies either accelerate or inhibit development. Each country can assess its international contribution, and some countries are punching above their weight like Turkey, South Africa, and Chile, each showing development leadership in different areas.”
Main Findings of CDI 2020:
Sweden comes out on top in its commitment to development, scoring well across six out of the seven components: Its rank of first on migration includes high migrant inflows, a high level of refugees hosted, and strong domestic migrant integration policies. Sweden also comes in third on development finance, and in the top ten on trade, investment, environment, and security. In technology, it has a ways to go.
The European commitment to development remains the strongest in the world, with France, Norway, the UK, and Germany rounding out the top five.
The expansion of the CDI to include major emerging actors in the development space led to some interesting results: Chile ranks first on the environment; Turkey ranks second on migration issues; and South Africa ranks fifth on technology. Importantly, when adjusted for income South Africa ranks sixth overall in its commitment to development, with Chile at 12th.
The United States and China rank 18th and 35th, respectively. The world’s two biggest economies, while significant in dollar figures, come up short in relation to the size of their economies.
Materials and resources:
CDI 2020 Brief
Global Health Security Blog
About the Center for Global Development:
The Center for Global Development is an independent, nonpartisan, nonprofit organization that works to reduce global poverty and improve lives through innovative economic research that drives better policy and practice by the world's top decision makers. https://www.cgdev.org/page/about-cgd