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High-Level Conference "United in providing a response for Latin America and the Caribbean to COVID-19"

President of the Government of Spain chairs the High-Level Conference entitled "United in providing a response for Latin America and the Caribbean to COVID-19"

Moncloa Palace, Madrid, Wednesday 24 June 2020

By means of this initiative, the government has underlined Spain's commitment to its traditional partners, which are facing a widespread economic and health crisis as a result of the pandemic.

The impact of COVID-19 in this region "poses a tremendous threat at a global level", said the President of the Government, given that the region is a driver of growth of the international economy and a key player in protecting global public assets".

To manage this crisis successfully requires developing new tools.

Despite currently being the worst hit region of the planet by the pandemic and its far-reaching economic consequences, most countries in Latin America and the Caribbean have no access to some of the international initiatives adopted in response to this crisis, allocated to the poorest countries of the world. For this reason, Pedro Sánchez called for international and regional financial institutions to develop responses adapted to the needs of the region without prejudicing future generations

"We must tackle the future while avoiding the mistakes of the past", said the President of the Government, underlying the need for a multilateral, coordinated and supportive response to support these countries.

The Government of Spain expressed a desire to form a coalition of Latin American countries, regional bodies and international financial institutions to design and structure support instruments, both for financial and technical assistance, "so that they can address the socio-economic consequences of the crisis and recover the path of inclusive and sustainable growth as soon as possible".

The initiative included the participation of the Presidents of Argentina, Colombia, Costa Rica, Chile, Ecuador, Peru, Paraguay, the Dominican Republic and Uruguay, as well as most senior officials from the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank, the Inter-American Development Bank, the Latin American Development Bank, the Central American Economic Integration Bank, the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean, the Ibero-American Secretariat-General and the Caribbean Community.

The participant countries and bodies at this Conference signed a Declaration reiterating the need to "adopt an innovative and ambitious approach that allows the impact of the crisis to be mitigated", and "responds opportunely and decisively, increasing the resources allocated to the region, making their instruments more flexible and speeding up pay-out processes, among others". It will also support the definition of balanced economic policies, that are environmentally sustainable and inclusive, and which promote social progress without leaving anyone behind, while enhancing the goals of the 2030 Agenda.

Non official translation