News & Analysis: Fiscal policy

The pandemic could undercut Africa’s precarious progress

“Even if vaccines come soon, African treasuries will still need help to avoid drawn-out debt crises and growth-choking cuts to spending.”

via The Economist

From stimulus to debt: The case of South Africa

“The COVID-19 pandemic has seen the widespread use of expansionary fiscal policies which, in terms of scale, is simply unprecedented. Crucially, for many countries in sub-Saharan Africa, these fiscal stimulus packages have deepened their debt challenges.”

via Brookings Institution

Ethiopia asks for debt relief as COVID-19 takes toll

“Ethiopia has asked for debt relief under a G20 programme to help poor countries reeling under the economic impact of coronavirus, making it the second African country to do so in the past week.”

via Financial Times

Memo to Leaders: Three ‘no regret’ decisions for financing Africa’s post-COVID-19 future

To contain the economic damage of the pandemic and capitalize on the region’s underlying strengths, national and international leaders need to pursue urgent action.

via COVID-19 Africa Watch

COVID-19 and taxes: Policies for the post-pandemic recovery

“Wealth taxes are underutilised as a policy tool. There is an opportunity to leverage them in response to COVID-19 as they can help reduce inequality and pave the way for equitable recovery.”

via International Growth Centre

Paris Club of international creditors accept Kenya debt relief request

“The Paris Club of international creditors said on Monday it had accepted a request from Kenya for a debt-servicing suspension from January to the end of June.”

via Reuters

An Africa unconstrained by a self-fulfilling debt narrative will rebound after COVID-19

“Africa’s debt narrative tends to forget the agency of African governments and instead focuses on portraying other players either as saviors or bogeymen.”

via Quartz Africa

World Bank sees more countries in ‘deep debt distress’ this year

“Chad and several other countries are already in deep debt distress and more will join their ranks this year, given the severity of the global recession triggered by the COVID-19 pandemic, World Bank Group President David Malpass said.”

via Reuters

Interview with Ladé Araba: Using Blended Finance to Tackle COVID-19 and Build Back Better

Ladé Araba, Managing Director for Africa at Convergence, talks to COVID-19 Africa Watch about blended finance’s potential role in building back after the pandemic, the core policy priorities, and her views on leadership.

via COVID-19 Africa Watch

Uhuru hits salaried workers with hidden tax increase

“Treasury Cabinet Secretary Ukur Yatani defended the new rates, arguing that simulations by his office had convinced even Parliament that no Kenyan will pay more taxes than what they were paying before COVID-19.”

via Daily Nation