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    G20 2021: COVID19 Variants Will Have A Big Dent On Global Economy – Leaders

    In their final statement issued late Saturday, G20 finance ministers warned that the spread of new variants was a “downside risk” to the economic recovery, while also warning of the dangers of differing paces of vaccination campaigns.

    US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said Sunday she was “very concerned” about the risk that new variants of coronavirus could pose to the global economic recovery from the pandemic.

    “We are very concerned about the Delta variant and other variants that could emerge and threaten recovery,” she told reporters following a G20 meeting in Venice, Italy.

    “We are a connected global economy, what happens in any part of the world affects all other countries.”

    In their final statement issued late Saturday, G20 finance ministers warned that the spread of new variants was a “downside risk” to the economic recovery, while also warning of the dangers of differing paces of vaccination campaigns.

    “We recognise the importance of working together to speed the process of vaccination and have the goal of wanting to vaccinate 70 percent of the world’s population next year,” Yellen said.

    The World Trade Organization, the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and the World Health Organization “have formed a taskforce to work on this and we’ve asked that we have regular monthly reports on how that work is going and that we address this issue more fully in October” at the G20 ministers’ next meeting.

    She said “a lot has been done” to finance the purchase of vaccines by developing countries, but said the world needed to “do something more and to be more effective” with respect to responding to outbreaks around the world, such as sending therapeutics and protective equipment.

    COVID-19 will likely be a forerunner of future catastrophic pandemics, unless significant new investments and reforms are urgently made to bolster global and national capacities for pandemic preparedness and rapid response.

    These are some of the main messages of the report, A Global Deal for Our Pandemic Age, presented by the G20 High Level Independent Panel on Financing the Global Commons for Pandemic Preparedness and Response (HLIP) at the third G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors meeting in Venice on 9 July.

    The Panel calls on the G20 and international community to move swiftly to close current shortfalls in the international COVID-19 response. The world cannot wait, continues the report, for COVID-19 to be over to make the global investments and reforms that are critically needed to head off future pandemics, which threaten to be more frequent and increasingly dangerous.

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