The UN is convening an online meeting to strengthen support to developing countries

The organization calls for helping developing countries cope with the consequences of the pandemic.

UN officials say they will hold an online meeting with leaders of a dozen countries on Thursday to discuss stepping up support for developing economies struck by the coronavirus pandemic.
Previously, experts predicted that developing countries would need about $ 2.5 trillion to cope with the consequences of the crisis, but now they warn that the amount may be higher. The meeting will be held at the initiative of Canada, Jamaica, and UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres.

Deputy Secretary-General Amina Mohammed said that many developing countries, including middle-income countries, do not have enough funds to fight the pandemic and invest in economic recovery. “The work is going on, but not fast enough,” she told reporters during an online briefing.

According to Mohammed, the proposal of the G20 countries and the Paris Club of creditors to suspend payments on conventional bilateral loans for the poorest countries until the end of 2020 is a good start, but additional efforts will be needed.

Of the 77 countries that can count on such support, only 22 have so far submitted official requests. Other countries fear that this will damage their ability to borrow in the long term.
Representatives of the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank, the African Union, the Institute of International Finance, and the Organization for economic cooperation and development (OECD) will take part in the meeting on Thursday. As explained by Mohammad, the goal of the conference is to develop concrete proposals within eight weeks.

The preliminary plan of the meeting, which was seen by Reuters, calls on the IMF to increase the level of liquidity in the world through a new issue of exclusive drawing rights (SDR), which is opposed by Washington.

Also, there was support for the idea of suspending debt payments for all developing countries that made the request, and not just for those affected by the G20 decision. The plan also calls on private sector lenders to come up with reactive solutions to avoid the even more severe consequences of a wave of defaults.