Plausible Prospect of Debt Relief


Global economic order is in dire need of a “paradigm shift” underweight of pandemic induced burgeoning socio-economic fall-out. Sensing the urgency of the matter, PM Imran Khan made the decisive statement at the opening ceremony of the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) special session on development financing. Building the pressing case for Pakistan and other pandemic-stricken developing nations; PM stressed that international creditors can substantially alleviate the economic pain of the developing world by providing debt relief and suspension, against the backdrop of serendipitous crisis.

It`s puerile to outline sustainable development goals and expect developing nations to meet the targets, without global fiscal activism. The developing world stands at the brink of humanitarian cataclysm owing to pandemic-induced recession. The International Development Committee (IDC) has already warned that “a legacy of humanitarian and development reversals could be more catastrophic than the direct impacts of covid-19 in developing countries”. Global medical inequality has already exacerbated the divide between “haves” and “haves not”. Adding insult to injury, the debt commitments and restructuring are further contracting the welfare budget. The consequent social unrest and prospects of mass mobilization might not only disrupt regional social orders but could also inflict debilitating blows to the world order.  Regional instability proliferates at an exponential pace in Marshall McLuhan`s “Global Village”.

The silver lining in the dark clouds of the post-pandemic world is the opportunity to redirect the world economic order towards a more salubrious, inclusive, and resilient path. As Shakespeare in Hamlet asserted that; “Words without thought never to heaven go”. So, multilateral institutions must assume the mantle of global economic recovery, by specifically addressing the debt conundrum of the developing world. G-7 and IMF must not delay the release of funds for vulnerable countries under Special Drawing Rights (SDR). Capital inflows and emergency relief funds will consolidate governments and social orders. Circumventing the human cost of a pandemic is not a perilous bargain because it`s colossal collective good that will transform international financial architecture to become people-oriented.

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