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Economics

World Bank’s Reinhart Says Win the Covid War First, Pay for It Later

Don’t confuse rebound with recovery.

Carmen Reinhart
Carmen Reinhart

Photographer: Samuel de Roman/Getty Images

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Governments spent trillions of dollars in 2020 tackling the pandemic while propping up businesses and households. But these unprecedented expenditures have awakened real concern about high levels of borrowing. World Bank Chief Economist Carmen Reinhart says we should worry about winning the war against Covid-19 first, and how to pay for it later. She joins host Stephanie Flanders to discuss why policymakers shouldn’t confuse rebound with recovery, and how a slow rollout of vaccines this year may cut global growth in half.