In addition to a massive loss of life, the Coronavirus pandemic has devastated entire industries and caused untold economic suffering to workers, renters and small businesses around the world. Wealthy countries have offset some of this pain through debt-financed social spending and stimulus, leading to renewed debates about the future of neoliberal austerity beyond the pandemic. Low and middle-income countries, however, have been far more constrained, due not only to smaller total budgets but to the way existing debts to foreign creditors limit their financing options.
In this talk, Potts considers sovereign debt relief efforts since the start of the pandemic, most notably the Debt Service Suspension Initiative. She shows how past debt crises continue to shape geographies of sovereign debt under Covid-19, and argues that the limited success of the DSSI is rooted in its replication of long-standing international approaches to sovereign debt crisis resolution that are designed to promote the interests of commercial creditors over those of indebted states.
Live Lecture and Q & A with speaker.