Development efforts towards Covid-19 vaccines are going at a fast pace but doubts remain on the worldwide availability of them. Hoarding of vaccines and lack of cooperation to distribute them may further complicate the efforts to control the pandemic. A coordinated effort towards distribution of vaccines is needed, macroeconomic influencers share their views on the Covid -19 impact.

Chad P. Bown

Chad P. Bown, senior fellow at Peterson Institute for International Economics, shared a video on the need for cooperation when it comes to vaccination. As pharmaceutical companies continue to carry out research into the development of a vaccine for Covid -19, uncertainty remains on the availability once a viable vaccine is discovered.

Every country in the world may not be able to produce these vaccines particularly developing countries. Further, sufficient doses of vaccines may not be available in the beginning leading to hoarding of vaccines.

The video highlights the need for a coordinated effort to distribute vaccines equally to curb the spread of the disease. With all the countries interdependent on one another for their economic growth, it is essential to distribute the vaccines and reduce the economic damage caused by the disease.

Konstantina Beleli

Konstantina Beleli, an economist, shared an article on the steps taken by the Zimbabwe government to curb anti-government protests in the country due to rising inflation and food shortages.

The Covid-19 pandemic has pushed Zimbabwe into economic crisis with the rate of inflation reaching 700%. The World Food Program has issued a warning that by the end of 2020 60% of people in the country will not have food security and leading to a potential humanitarian catastrophe.

The rate of corruption, which costs the country $2bn each year, has also increased during the pandemic leading to increase in costs of medical supplies and personal protective equipment.

Nasser Saidi

Nasser Saidi, president of Nasser Saidi & Associates, shared an article on the rising hyperinflation in Lebanon. In June, hyperinflation in the country was 20% month-on-month compared to the previous year. Prices of goods and services change in a daily basis in the country with food prices soaring by 108.9% during the first half of 2020.

The inefficient economic policies and overvalued exchange rate have created huge deficits in the country. The national public debt in the country in 2020 reached 184% of GDP, which is the third highest in the world.

The article notes that a capital control act should be implemented to control the outflow of capital and stabilise the exchange rate. Reduction in public spending particularly in the power sector and raising the prices of subsidised commodities should be implemented to improve Lebanon’s economic crisis, the article adds.

Prof. Steve Hanke

Prof. Steve Hanke, an economist, shared an article on how Chevron has written off $2.6bn worth of investments in Venezuela due to political instability in the country. He noted that the oil production by the national oil producer, Petróleos de Venezuela was its lowest in 70 years.

Hanke added that the vast oil reserves in the country are going untapped due to the political turmoil in the country.