G7 foreign ministers to hold video link discussion on coronavirus coordination

A G7 Foreign Ministers’ Meeting scheduled to take place in the US city of Pittsburgh will proceed today over video

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Photo: Spencer Platt/Getty

A G7 Foreign Ministers’ Meeting scheduled to take place in the US city of Pittsburgh will proceed today over video teleconference.

As the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) continues to infect individuals around the world, countries have taken dramatic monetary policy actions to lessen its economic impact, including slashing interest rates and introducing quantitative easing. For instance, the US Federal Reserve announced on Monday that it would buy as many US government bonds and mortgage-backed securities as needed “to support smooth market functioning”.

Today’s G7 teleconference will serve as an opportunity for the world’s leading economies to begin substantiating a multilateral plan to financially combat the pandemic. A pressing item expected to be addressed requests for more medical equipment like N95 respirators and surgical masks—particularly by member states with healthcare systems overwhelmed by the virus, such as Italy and the US—to treat those already infected.

One of the aims of today’s meeting is to offer reassurance that G7 governments are taking unified action to put markets at ease and provide for the healthcare needs of those infected. One such gesture could see a commitment to work toward meeting the World Health Organization’s request for $675 million for the costs of preparing for and responding to the pandemic—less than 25% of this sum has been met so far. Such a move would provide needed reassurance in the realm of funding the fight to contain COVID-19.

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