Tackling COVID-19 in Africa: An unfolding health and economic crisis that demands bold action

The COVID-19 pandemic is primarily a health crisis and a human tragedy, but it also has far-reaching economic ramifications. In Africa, it is already disrupting millions of people’s livelihoods, with disproportionate impact on poor households and small and informal businesses—and the pace of this disruption is likely to accelerate in the weeks ahead. No country or community is exempt; in oil-exporting countries, COVID-related challenges are compounded by the collapse of the oil price.An initial analysis of COVID-19’s economic impact, which finds that Africa’s GDP growth in 2020 could be cut by 3–8 percentage points. A framework for near-term action by governments, the private sector, and development institutions to mitigate this impact.