Kristalina Georgieva, head of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), chaired a discussion last week with Neil Ferguson, director of the Abdul Latif Jameel Institute for Disease and Emergency Analytics at Imperial College London, and his colleague, Azra Ghani, on the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on livelihoods. The discussion was held as part of the IMF’s annual Spring Meeting, hosted online this year due to COVID-19.

Addressing the IMF’s forecast that the global economy will begin to recover in the second half of 2020, Ferguson suggested that there will be variation by geography.

“The countries that decide to mostly mitigate — but not necessarily stop — the pandemic will see a much higher impact in the short term but will, in some senses, put the pandemic behind them.

By contrast, Ferguson anticipated that most high-income countries and China would need to keep substantial controls in place until a vaccine is discovered, which he expected in 2021.”

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