The tradeoff between lost lives during the pandemic and lost livelihoods is often viewed as an all-or-nothing choice between complete lockdown versus zero restrictions. In reality, a balance can be struck.
Without the right policies and programs, Asia’s poorest people could suffer needlessly as economies bounce back after the pandemic.
The pandemic is challenging policymakers across Asia. The shape of the economic recovery is uncertain but pro-active government and central bank policies can improve outcomes.
Governments in Central and West Asia must commit to reforms and get them right, or face a downward spiral. The costs of the crisis are already obvious in rising deficits and debt. There is no room for complacency.
An analysis of global responses to the virus indicate that expanding the capacity to test, trace, and isolate potential carriers is effective, as is the expansion of paid sick leave benefits.
Innovative, new methods are needed to estimate poverty due to the high costs and long time frame of traditional methods.
Policies that promote wellness can help Asians navigate the uncertain, stressful COVID-19 world and achieve a better post-pandemic lifestyle.
The more Viet Nam’s state-owned enterprises can access capital through the strength of their own balance sheets, the more they can help fund infrastructure, social development and COVID-19 response.
Asian regulators and policy makers should undertake prudential financial supervision and regulation to improve the quality of private debt and reduce the risk of financial instability in the future.
Families throughout Asia and the Pacific rely on money sent by relatives overseas. These remittances are threatened by the pandemic but policy actions can help.