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Webinar announcement: Strengthening social contracts in South Asia in the aftermath of the COVID-19 crisis

24/06/2020

On Thursday 25 June, the IPC-IG, UNICEF and Development Pathways will host what will be the 2nd webinar of the series “Social Protection in South Asia – the landscape before the COVID-19, and a snapshot into responses to the crisis and the paths ahead”.

The COVID-19 crisis has revealed the weaknesses of social protection systems across South Asia. Most high-income countries have been able to fall back on modern, universal social security systems—complemented by innovative emergency schemes—to deliver a fiscal stimulus and protect most families affected by the crisis from destitution. In contrast, most South Asian countries have entered the crisis with social protection systems that are immature and truncated at best, offering limited poverty-targeted programmes alongside more generous protection—often through social insurance—to formal workers. As a consequence of these weak systems, most South Asian countries have had to rely on emergency programmes that have faced many operational challenges in providing adequate support to those affected by the COVID-19 crisis.

Abdul Alim, UNICEF’s Social Protection Specialist for South Asia, will examine the structural deficiencies in social cohesion that characterise South Asian societies. IPC-IG coordinator, Fábio Veras will then present the IPC-IG’s preliminary findings on the core epidemiological and macroeconomic impacts that the COVID-19 crisis is expected to have on the South Asian region, and the extent to which short-term social protection responses deployed in the region can be considered adequate to their contexts. Finally, Development Pathways’ Senior Social Policy Specialist & CEO, Mr. Stephen Kidd, will present the findings of a recently-released investment case for universal cash transfers in South Asia. He will discuss the potential advantages and possible funding mechanisms, as well as the extent to which this could be an opportunity to strengthen social contracts in South Asian countries.

Register for the webinar here.

Details: 25 June, 2020 – 09:00 EDT/GMT-4

The series is a joint effort initiated by the IPC-IGGIZ, and DFAT in collaboration with the socialprotection.org platform, and in cooperation with partners from different organisations.

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