UN report: A mutant “Omicron” impeded the recovery of the global economy


The major United Nations report on the global economy showed that the rapid spread of the new COVID-19 variant, “Omicron”, has curbed the rapid recovery, undermining signs of strong growth at the end of last year.

The World Economic Situation and Prospects Report 2022 (WESP), released today by the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs, cites a range of problems that are slowing the economy, including new waves of Covid-19 infections, continuing labor market and supply chain challenges, and increasing inflation pressures.

The report expects the slowdown to continue in the coming year, after an encouraging 5.5 percent expansion in 2021 – driven by strong consumer spending and some buyout investment, with trade in goods exceeding pre-pandemic levels – and global output is expected to grow by 4.0 percent. in 2022 and 3.5 percent in 2023.

The report said: It is also expected that developing countries will be hit harder in the long run than those of the richer countries, while Africa and Latin America and the Caribbean are expected to experience much lower growth, compared to pre-pandemic expectations, leading to more poverty and less Advances in sustainable development and climate action.

He further predicted that the number of people living in extreme poverty would remain well above pre-pandemic levels, with poverty expected to increase further in the most vulnerable economies: in Africa, while the absolute number of people living in poverty was expected to rise until 2023. He also predicted that the economies of the rich countries would recover almost completely by next year.

However, in light of rising inflation, many central banks have begun to ease their extraordinary monetary response to the crisis.

Commenting on the launch of the report, United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres declared that with the Water and Environmental Sanitation Program calling for better coordinated and targeted fiscal policies and measures, it is time to bridge inequality gaps within and among countries.

“If we act in solidarity – as one human family – we can make 2022 a real year of recovery for people and economies alike,” Guterres said.

For his part, Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs Liu Zhenmin drew attention to the importance of a coordinated and sustainable global approach to contain COVID-19, which includes universal access to vaccines.

He warned that without this approach, the pandemic will continue to pose the greatest risk to the comprehensive and sustainable recovery of the global economy.

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