The COVID-19 pandemic and the responses of governments in the MENA region have exposed the deep inequalities and massive failures of their economic systems, characterized by policies that have traditionally promoted austerity measures.

The pandemic and other overlapping crises have contributed to further exacerbating debt levels in many countries of the region . High debt levels often translate into more austerity measures under the pretext of bringing debt down to sustainable levels. Therefore, all indicators signal that the Covid-19 recovery period will feature stricter austerity measures, especially as the IMF has ramped up its involvement in the region and more loan programs are expected to be negotiated with several countries. Thus, economic and social policies in the region are expected to continue to be shaped by the debt and austerity trap that has plagued the region for many years.

Within the global action week to fight inequality in parallel to the Davos World Economic Forum virtual meeting, the Arab Reform Initiative and Oxfam in MENA are organizing this webinar to examine the cases of Egypt and Lebanon and draw lesson learnt from international experiences of civil society in their efforts on debt cancelation.

To watch the webinar: click here

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