Good morning, good afternoon and good evening.
As Tarik said, we’re delighted to be joined today by Kristalina Georgieva, the Managing-Director of the International Monetary Fund. Welcome, my sister.
Kristalina will say more in a few minutes about the economic impact of the pandemic and what the IMF is doing to support countries and the global economy.
More than 1 million confirmed cases of COVID-19 have now been reported to WHO, including more than 50,000 deaths.
But we know that this is much more than a health crisis. We are all aware of the profound social and economic consequences of the pandemic.
The restrictions many countries have put in place to protect health are taking a heavy toll on the income of individuals and families, and the economies of communities and nations.
We are in a shared struggle to protect both lives and livelihoods.
In the short term, countries can ease the burden on their populations through social welfare programs to ensure people have food and other life essentials.
For some countries, debt relief is essential to enable them to take care of their people and avoid economic collapse. This is an area of cooperation between WHO, the IMF and the World Bank.
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