UN launches an action plan to combat the pandemic

“COVID-19 is the biggest test we have faced together since the formation of the United Nations”, declared on Tuesday (31) António Guterres, Secretary-General of the United Nations.

The statement was made during the launch of an action plan to combat the potentially devastating socio-economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Shared responsibility, global solidarity: responding to the socioeconomic impacts of COVID-19” is the title of the report published by the UN. The document describes the speed and scale of the pandemic, the seriousness of the cases and the social and economic disturbances caused by it, bringing possible solutions.

Gloomy estimates

The report includes estimates from several UN agencies. According to the International Labor Organization (ILO), 5 million to 25 million jobs will be lost worldwide this year.

The United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) projected a 30% to 40% drop in global foreign direct investment flows, while the World Tourism Organization (WTO) recorded a 20% to 30% decline in international arrivals.

Meanwhile, the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) anticipated that 3.6 billion people will not have access to the Internet, and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) predicted that 1.5 billion people students will be out of school.

The report calls for a comprehensive, coordinated and large-scale multilateral response that represents at least 10% of the global Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

+Read the full document by clicking here (available in English)

António Guterres

New paradigm

Despite the pessimistic scenario, Guterres noted that the UN is “fully mobilized” and is establishing a new Trust Fund for Response and Recovery against COVID-19, made up of multiple partners, to respond to the emergency and promote recovery after the socio-economic shock.

Citing the 2030 Agenda and the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), he argued that the recovery should lead to the construction of more inclusive and sustainable economies, more resilient in the face of pandemics, climate change and other global challenges.

“The world now needs solidarity,” emphasized the UN secretary-general. “With solidarity, we can defeat the virus and build a better world.”