Event Recap

New Atlanticist

Sep 14, 2020

IDB president warns of a looming COVID debt crisis in Latin America, but also highlights opportunities

By David A. Wemer

Actions taken throughout the region to control not only the pandemic, but also “the spread of poverty [and] the spread of unemployment,” have “increased debt to households, to governments, and to businesses,” Moreno explained, while the restrictions of movement and commerce imposed to curb the spread of the virus will make it more difficult for Latin American economies to cope with this debt once the initial phase of the crisis is over.

Coronavirus Future of Work

Many Latin America and the Caribbean countries have responded with unprecedented policies to combat the multi-dimensional threats of COVID-19. Still, these efforts have mostly focused on combating the immediate consequences. How can the region prepare now for the many medium to long-term challenges of COVID-19? What steps can be taken to restore growth while making it more inclusive, innovative, and sustainable? What should be the role of international institutions like the IDB to accelerate a regional recovery?

The Atlantic Council’s Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center and the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security’s Foresight, Strategy, and Risks Initiative hosted, on September 14, 2020, an #ACFrontPage conversation on the regional implications of COVID-19 and post-COVID recovery with Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) President Luis Alberto Moreno. This discussion also launched a joint Atlantic Council-IDB project that will map potential scenarios and provide recommendations for the region’s post-COVID future. 

This live show was part of the Atlantic Council’s #ACFrontPage event series, an ideas platform spotlighting global leaders who are championing constructive solutions to global challenges. It was also part of the Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center’s Leaders of the Americas series, which offers insight and analysis at the highest level to discuss the most pressing issues facing the region today. 

An #ACFrontPage Event

Atlantic Council Front Page is our premier live ideas platform for global leaders to discuss the defining challenges of our time. #ACFrontPage is a high-level event series featuring top newsmakers across multiple digital platforms. Harnessing the convening power and expertise of the Council’s sixteen programs and centers, #ACFrontPage leverages the Council’s capabilities in social media, press, and digital outreach to spotlight the world’s most prominent leaders and the most compelling ideas across sectors and engage new audiences eager for nonpartisan and constructive solutions to current global challenges. This widely promoted program features the Council’s most important guests and content serving as the highlight of our programming.


Luis Alberto Moreno
Inter-American Development Bank

In conversation with

Jason Marczak
Director, Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center
Atlantic Council

Welcome remarks by

Frederick Kempe
President and CEO
Atlantic Council

Adrienne Arsht
Executive Vice Chair; Founder, Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center
Atlantic Council