Prime Minister Justin Trudeau opened a major United Nations conference Thursday morning saying a co-ordinated response is necessary for the global economy to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic.
“For the global economy to recover and for our domestic economies to bounce back we need a global, coordinated plan,” Trudeau told the conference, referring to the current pandemic as an international crisis with many dimensions.
The UN estimates without such a plan, the pandemic could slash nearly $8.5-trillion from the world economy over the next two years and force 34.3 million people into extreme poverty this year.
Trudeau told more than 50 heads of state and government that “our citizens need to have confidence in international institutions that leave no one behind and are capable of overcoming global challenges.”
Earlier this week, Trudeau argued that ensuring poorer countries survive the crisis is not just the right thing to do, it’s in Canada’s own self-interest.
He says Canadian jobs and businesses depend on stable and productive economies in other countries, so it matters how other nations weather the COVID-19 storm.
The conference will address six urgent areas of action to mobilize the financing needed for a global recovery, including expanding liquidity in the global economy and maintaining financial stability and involving private-sector creditors in recovery plans.
In addition, the conference comes just as Canada is competing for one of two non-permanent seats on the UN Security Council against Norway and Ireland.
The UN vote is set for next month, and Canada is running on a platform of trying to help rebuild the post-pandemic world.
In a release about the event, the UN says all countries face economic strain due to the pandemic, particularly developing countries which were already in “debt distress” before the crisis and can’t afford to cushion the blow for their citizens or to undertake fiscal stimulus measures.
Earlier this week, when Trudeau announced his role in the conference, he argued that ensuring poorer countries survive the crisis is not just the right thing to do, it’s in Canada’s own self-interest.
“Canadian jobs and businesses depend on stable and productive economies in other countries, so it matters to us how everyone weathers this storm,” he said Tuesday.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 28, 2020.