Over the last 15 years, Latin America and the Caribbean has made substantial progress in expanding the reach of its infrastructure. Tens of millions of people were connected to clean water grids for the first time, and access to electricity became nearly universal, with low-income and peri-urban areas able to experience the novel pleasure of turning on the lights or running a … [Read more...] about From Structures to Services: A New Vision for Infrastructure
Natural disasters are different from pandemics. They cause death, displacement, and destruction of physical capital, and unlike a pandemic, their effects are brief and confined to the areas affected. The literature shows that natural disasters impact growth in the short term. But how quickly do countries recover? The outcomes are surprising, and they show how important social … [Read more...] about What Experiences with Natural Disasters Can Teach about Recovering from the Pandemic
The Covid-19 pandemic is different both in nature and in magnitude from the financial crises that have afflicted the region repeatedly in the past. However, the experience of previous crises can provide lessons to help make the recovery from the pandemic more vigorous. Specifically, we should learn from the successes of the Brady Plan of the 1990s, while avoiding the errors of … [Read more...] about Baker or Brady: Lessons of Past Financial Crises for the Pandemic Recovery
A silver lining that has emerged from the Covid-19 pandemic is that CO2 emissions have decreased dramatically during the lockdowns. But that this is not necessarily good news for climate change. Emission levels are likely to return to previous levels once the lockdowns are lifted because there have not been any structural changes in climate-related policies that will lock in … [Read more...] about Climate Change is a Threat to Economic Growth and to Reducing Income Inequality in Latin America and the Caribbean
Financial markets are in turmoil with the spread of COVID-19 and its consequences for the global economy. Emerging markets suffer particularly acutely in times of financial uncertainty, as global investment portfolios shift to safer asset classes. This means that the COVID-19 shock is creating a “sudden stop” in capital flows for emerging markets. The costs of sudden stops for … [Read more...] about Latin America has experienced sudden stops in the past. The coronavirus takes the challenge to a new level.