Global debt crises – what role for the CEE/CIS region? - Eurodad Policy Forum 2021
- Iolanda Fresnillo (Eurodad)
- Kristina Rehbein (Erlassjahr)
- Marcin Wojtalik (Institute of Global Responsibility (IGO))
- Ajda Pistotnik, Slovenia
- Zvezdan Kalmar, Serbia
- Daniyar Serikov, Kazakhstan
Debt crises are not just a problem for large debtor countries in Latin America or the poorest countries in Africa. Countries in the CEE/CIS region are also affected by over-indebtedness. After the collapse of the Soviet Union in the late 1980s, many countries in the region ran into payment difficulties.
Now in 2021, 15 out of 18 countries in the region are critically indebted. The main risks come from borrowing abroad. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has also always played a central role, from the first shock liberalization in the 1990s after the collapse of the Eastern Bloc to the current austerity programme. The economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic is exacerbating existing crises and increasing inequality in many developing countries. Many countries are struggling with weak health systems due to previous austerity measures. Because of their income, most countries in Eastern Europe/CIS are excluded from debt relief measures that the G20 and the IMF have created for developing countries to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic.
At the same time, some countries of the region are in a double role of not only being a debtor, but also a relevant creditor to other developing countries, which implies a responsibility in debt crisis resolution either in bilateral cases and in global reform discussions.
Iolanda Fresnillo ·