GCAP together with 220 organisations urge G20 finance ministers to back a new round of IMF Special Drawing Rights, as poorest countries struggle with Covid-19 crises

Open letter calls for a general allocation of $US 3 trillion to tackle health, social and economic fallout, ahead of finance ministers’ meeting on Friday

 

More than 230 civil society organisations across the world are calling on the G20 and IMF to issue a vital new round of liquidity free of conditionalities, known as Special Drawing Rights (SDRs).

In a joint letter the organisations write: “A new SDR allocation would send a strong signal of renewed multilateral coordination that puts life first and is within your immediate reach.” G20 Finance Ministers are due to meet this Friday, for the first time under the Italian Presidency and since the Biden administration took power.

The signatories to the letter – which include the Global Call to Action Against Poverty (GCAP) – are calling for US$ 3 trillion in order to address the needs on the ground in a decisive way. In 2009, the international community responded to a crisis far smaller in its scope and human impact with US $ 250 billion in SDRs.

Georgina Muñoz Pavon, GCAP global Co-Chair: “This year, G20 countries must overcome their differences and demonstrate international solidarity. Special Drawing Rights could free up funding for low- and middle income countries to invest in the services that people desperately need – including vaccination, social protection and gender responsive health systems.”

Patricia Miranda, Advocacy Coordinator at the Latin American Network for Economic and Social Justice (LATINDADD) and GCAP partner said: “A new and significant allocation of SDRs would bring the liquidity that countries urgently need, to finance health and social protection policies and to stabilise economies, with benefits for global recovery.”

Aldo Caliari, Senior Director of Policy and Campaigns at the Jubilee USA Network said: « For many countries, access to this global reserve currency – Special Drawing Rights – is the only way to afford urgent coronavirus spending needs while avoiding a debt crisis. »

Chiara Mariotti, Senior Policy and Advocacy Officer at the European Network on Debt and Development (Eurodad) said: “The inability of G20 governments to agree on a new issuance of SDRs is denying a much-needed source of liquidity to poor countries struggling to cope with the pandemic.”

 

Contact: Ingo Ritz, Director, ingo.ritz@gcap.global, +32498412008

  • What are Special Drawing Rights? SDRs are an international reserve asset created by the IMF and distributed to its members in proportion to their quotas. The last general allocation of SDRs happened in 2009, in the wake of the global financial crisis, totaling around US$ 250 billion.