Loss-of-learning and the post-Covid recovery in low-income countries

We analyze the medium-term macroeconomic impact of the Covid-19 pandemic and associated lock-down measures on low-income countries. We focus on the impact of the degradation of health and human capital caused by the pandemic and its aftermath, exploring the trade-offs between rebuilding human capital and the recovery of livelihoods and macroeconomic sustainability. A dynamic general equilibrium model is calibrated to reflect the structural characteristics of vulnerable low-income countries and to replicate key dimensions of the Covid-19 shock. We show that absent significant and sustained external financing, the persistence of loss-of-learning effects on labor productivity is likely to make the post-Covid recovery more attenuated and more expensive than many contemporary analysis suggests.

F. Buffie E., Adam C., Zanna L-F., Kpodar K. (2022), Loss-of-learning and the post-Covid recovery in low-income countries, Journal of Macroeconomics, vol. 75.