The United Nations called on Monday for a $ 2.5 trillion aid package to help developing countries tackle the COVID-19 pandemic, including debt relief and a "marshal plan" to restore health.
A report from the United Nations Conference on Trade, Investment and Development (UNCTAD) found that two thirds of the world's population in developing countries (excluding China) are experiencing "unprecedented economic damage" from the crisis.
"It is an urgent urgency for the international community to coordinate appropriate economic bailouts with a more global reach to address the impending funding gap that many developing countries are now facing," the report said.
In the two months since COVID-19 began to spread beyond China, developing countries have been hard hit by capital outflows, currency devaluations, and export earnings, particularly due to falling commodity prices and falling tourist revenues.
In most areas, the impact is worse than during the 2008 financial crisis, UNCTAD said.
"The economic impact of the shock is ongoing and increasingly difficult to predict, but there are clear signs that the situation in developing countries will deteriorate significantly before they improve," said UNCTAD Secretary General Mukhisa Kituyi in a statement.
The report was released when the number of cases rose to over 700,000, including more than 33,500 deaths, and nearly 3.4 billion people were banned.
No "magic money tree"
While leading economic powers have put together unprecedented government bailouts, UNCTAD stressed that developing countries have no "magic money tree".
"Without the monetary, fiscal, and administrative capacities to respond to this crisis, the effects of a combined health pandemic and global recession will be catastrophic for many developing countries," she warned.
Richard Kozul-Wright, head of UNCTAD for globalization and development strategies, pointed out that the 20 largest economies in the world "have promised to do everything to prevent their businesses and households from experiencing high income losses".
"But if the G20 leaders want to maintain their commitment to a" global response in a spirit of solidarity, "the six billion people who live outside of the G20 core economies must take action," he said.
Monday's report called on the world community to provide developing countries with a $ 2.5 trillion aid package.
This included a $ 1.0 trillion liquidity injection, which was made possible by the reassignment of existing special drawing rights to the International Monetary Fund and a new, large allocation.
It also included $ 1.0 trillion in debt relief and a $ 500 billion "Marshall Plan for Health Restoration" funded from previously committed but never official development aid.
UNCTAD said rich countries have failed to spend $ 2.0 trillion in promised development aid to developing countries in the past decade.
(Except for the headline, this story was not edited by NDTV staff and published from a syndicated feed.)