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Re-imagining domestic policies for sustainable and inclusive debt relief

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The pandemic has taken a heavy toll on economic growth and productivity gains, reducing the ability of governments to make spending choices. Poverty and inequality have risen globally and so have levels of public debt. The impacts of the war in Ukraine, such as rising costs, are now compounding those challenges. 

For lower-income countries, high debt levels represent a source of macroeconomic instability, which has led to severe financial crises in the past and high economic and social costs. To avoid such crises and support a sustainable recovery from COVID-19, new ways of approaching debt relief are needed.  

IDRC is co-hosting a side event to the Forum on Financing for Development to share insights that could guide debt relief efforts. Panelists will draw on IDRC-supported research underway in 12 low-income countries to discuss how the compounding challenges manifest themselves and the policy options that could address development goals during upcoming debt restructuring or workouts.   

The honourable Bob Rae, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Canada to the United Nations (UN) will provide opening remarks. 

The panelists include: 

  • Ishac Diwan, director of research, Finance for Development Lab, Paris School of Economics, and research fellow, Economic Research Forum 

  • Ramiro Albrieu, associate researcher, Centro de Estudios de Estado y Sociedad, and researcher, Red Sudamericana de Economía Aplicada (Red Sur) 

  • Mma Amara Ekeruche, senior research fellow, Centre for the Study of the Economics of Africa 

  • Paul Lakuma, research fellow, Economic Policy Research Centre 

  • Alemayehu Geda, professor of Economics, Addis Ababa University 

This panel is also co-hosted by the Economic Research Forum, Finance for Development Lab and Red Sur. It is co-sponsored by Canada’s Permanent Mission to the UN. 

Organized by the UN Economic and Social council, the Forum on Financing for Development occurs yearly to follow up on actions by governments, international organizations, the business sector, civil society, and philanthropists to finance the sustainable development 2030 agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals. 

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