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Social Protection during the Pandemic: Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, and Mexico

Author

Listed:
  • Merike Blofield
  • Nora Lustig

    (Stone Center for Latin American Studies, Department of Economics, Tulane University, Commitment to Equity Institute (CEQ).)

  • Mart Trasberg

Abstract

In this paper we analyze the COVID-19 policy responses in socialprotection and evaluate to what extent have these measures potentially mitigated the impact of pandemic on inequality and poverty in the region’s four largest countries: Argentina, Brazil, Colombia and Mexico. There is a considerable variation in the governments’ policy responses and in terms of speed, breadth, and size. All nations put in place some measures to protect the livelihood of formal workers, which included prohibition of layoffs, salary and work hours reductions, and furloughs. Argentina, Brazil and Colombia launched programs to subsidize formal sector employment in companies that were hard hit by the crisis, and Mexico provided loans to small and medium size enterprises. All countries maintained intact their existing non-contributory transfer programs, and Argentina, Brazil and Colombia launched new emergency cash transfer programs, while Mexico did not. Substantial expansions of existing socialassistance or entirely new programs have been able to offset a significant share of the poverty caused by the crisis in Argentinaand Brazil, and to a lesser extent, Colombia.

Suggested Citation

  • Merike Blofield & Nora Lustig & Mart Trasberg, 2021. "Social Protection during the Pandemic: Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, and Mexico," Commitment to Equity (CEQ) Working Paper Series 104, Tulane University, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:tul:ceqwps:104
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    File URL: http://repec.tulane.edu/RePEc/ceq/ceq104.pdf
    File Function: First version, 2021
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    Cited by:

    1. Nora Lustig & Valentina Martinez Pabon & Guido Neidhöfer & Mariano Tommasi, 2020. "Short and Long-Run Distributional Impacts of COVID-19 in Latin America," Working Papers 2013, Tulane University, Department of Economics.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Covid-19; social protection; poverty; inequality; health; education; Latin America;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • D31 - Microeconomics - - Distribution - - - Personal Income and Wealth Distribution
    • I14 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Health and Inequality
    • I31 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - General Welfare, Well-Being
    • I32 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Measurement and Analysis of Poverty
    • I38 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Government Programs; Provision and Effects of Welfare Programs

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