Wealthy Countries Must Share Pandemic Relief Aid, Organizations Say

In a letter to finance ministers, 250 organizations call on wealthy countries to donate IMF emergency currency they don't need to poor countries. In August, the IMF created $650 billion in Special Drawing Rights (SDRs) to support global coronavirus response. More than $400 billion went to wealthy countries and $230 billion went to developing countries.

“Wealthy countries recovering from the pandemic don't need the currency, while poor countries need the aid for vaccinations and the growing amount of people living in poverty,” said Aldo Caliari, one of the letter’s organizers and Senior Director of Policy for religious development organization Jubilee USA Network.

Letter signers said SDR sharing should provide debt-free and unconditional aid. The 250 groups raised concerns about the needs of middle-income developing countries.

“The pandemic revealed all developing countries, no matter their income, are vulnerable,” stated United Nations finance expert and Jubilee USA Executive Director Eric LeCompte. "The worst job losses and poverty increases during this crisis are taking place in developing middle-income countries, which are most of the world's countries," continued LeCompte. "The IMF and G20 need to support more options to get Special Drawing Rights to help these countries."

The letter states SDRs can finance health, education and efforts to protect the environment.

On October 1, Jubilee USA sponsors an event featuring IMF, UN and developing country speakers to discuss pandemic vulnerabilities in middle-income developing countries. On October 4, letter signers present their asks during an event with IMF Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva and Director of the IMF Strategy Policy and Review Department, Ceyla Pazarbasioglu.

Read the CSO letter here.

Watch the Civil Society Policy Forum event "Mapping Pandemic Vulnerabilities in Developing Countries" here.

Watch the Civil Society Policy Forum event "Making the Most of Special Drawing Rights: Approaches to Maximize Impact and Create a Sustainable and Just Recovery" here.

Read Jubilee USA's press release on the creation of Special Drawing Rights here.

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