Antonio Guterres, Secretary-General of the United Nations (UN) warns that the world is facing its most challenging crisis since the Second World War and if strict actions are not taken thing will get out of hands.
He says that the COVID-19 will bring in a recession which probably “has no parallel in the recent past”.
The novel coronavirus brings the risk where the combination of the disease and its impact on the economies will contribute to the “enhanced instability, enhanced unrest, and enhanced conflict,” said the UN at the launch of the report which talks about the socioeconomic impact of COBID-19, on Tuesday.
Guterres has called for a stronger and effective global response towards the Coronavirus pandemic along with the economic and social damage that the deadly virus is causing.
He stressed that the only possible way to do it is if every person and government come together forgetting politics and understands that the entire mankind is at stake. The reports said, “We are facing a global health crisis unlike any in the 75-year history of the United Nations — one that is killing people, spreading human suffering, and upending people’s lives,”
“But this is much more than a health crisis. It is a human crisis. The coronavirus disease is attacking societies at their core”.
Talking to the reporters, the Secretary-General of the UN said, “The magnitude of the response must match the scale of the crisis large-scale, coordinated and comprehensive, with the country and international responses being guided by the World Health Organization.”
He argued that we are still far away from where we need to be in order to effectively combat the Coronavirus on the global level and also to be able to tackle the adverse impacts it has and will have on the economies and the global society.
First, he stated, there are many countries which are not following the guidelines laid down by the World Health Organisation (WHO), and they are tending the situation in their own way.
He said, “Let us remember that we are only as strong as the weakest health system in our interconnected world,”. It becomes very essential that the “developed countries” immediately come forward to help the ones who not developing or are not developed in strengthening their health system and their capacity of containing the transmission.
Second, he said, that as $5 trillion has already been mobilised – most of the money coming fom the developed countries including $ 2 trillion from the US alone – to support their own economies from the adverse impacts of the Coronavirus.
He said, “We are far from having a global package to help the developing world to create the conditions both to suppress the disease and to address the dramatic consequences in their populations, in the people that lost their jobs, the small companies that are operating and risk to disappear, those that live with the informal economy that now have no chance to survive,”.
The developing countries require a major support at a time like this. The report cites the International Labor Organisation which estimates that in 2020 between 50 lakh and 2.5 crore jobs will be lost with a corresponding loss between $ 860 million and $ 3.4 trillion just in labour income.
The reports also cite an estimate given by the UN Trade and Development Organisation called UNCTAD (United Nations Conference on Trade and Development) which talks about a 30% to 40% downward pressure on the global foreign direct investment flows in 2020.
Guterres announced that a COVID-19 Response and Recovery Fund has been set-up to support efforts in the low and middle income countries intending to swiftly enable the governments to combat the crisis and help in recovery.
He expressed hope that there will be a positive response from the international community and they will extend a hand in help to the vulnerable people including the millions of refugees and the internally displaced people, those in the slums of the big cities, and also the poor people in the middle-income countries who are in higher numbers than the developed countries.
The UN’s Secretary-General said that the developed countries should greatly increase their resources available to the developing countries by increasing the capacity of the IMF (International Monetary Fund) to issue special drawing rights and enable the other international financial institutes tp massively inject resources into the countries that are in need.