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Public money creation to maintain fundamental human rights during the COVID-19 pandemic

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Takondwa Chimowa, Stephen Hall, Bernadette Ann-Marie O'Hare

School/Research organisations


As governments around the world respond to the COVID-19 pandemic with a range of policies aimed at mitigating the economic fallout, we argue that low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) should prioritize public money creation over foreign borrowing. Experience shows that the cost of servicing foreign debt diverts resources from public services and can undermine fundamental economic, social and cultural rights, such as the rights to clean water, sanitation, basic education and health care. Moreover, the conditions attached to any subsequent debt restructuring can make matters worse.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)395–397
Journal Harvard Health and Human Rights Journal
Issue number1
Early online date6 May 2020
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2020

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