The pandemic has taken a heavy toll on the global economy. The sources of economic growth and productivity gains have been constrained, and poverty and inequality have risen sharply. In addition, fiscal space has been severely educed and public debt levels have risen at an unprecedented speed. To accelerate the recovery from COVID-19 and make it more sustainable, it is urgent to reconsider debt-restructuring strategies.
This policy brief describes the pitfalls in current approaches to debt restructuring for assessing sustainability in low and lower-middle income countries, proposes a reframing of debt sustainability analysis to take into account social and environmental sustainability and provides concrete examples of initiatives based on the experiences and challenges of the developing world.