PEP Research Fellow identifies economic implications of COVID-19 in Africa

April 5, 2020 

Professor John Ataguba, a PEP Research Fellow, has published an article on the economic implications of COVID-19 in Africa

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John AtagubaAssociate Professor at the University of Cape Town and a PEP Research Fellowhas published an article on the economic implications of COVID-19 in Africa.

In the paperCOVID-19 Pandemic, a War to be Won: Understanding its Economic Implications for Africa, Professor Ataguba likens the government response needed to that of times of war. He calls for “drastic steps and actions, backed by a strong will and desire from the government and its people” to mitigate the substantial cost of this crisis to the economy. 

Analysing the macro and microeconomic costs associated with the COVID-19 pandemic, Professor Ataguba highlights key problem areas:

  • The burden of out-of-pocket health spending is likely to increase for many African households;
  • Countries with large informal sectors (where there are no social benefits or income protection) will see many households suffer, especially during lockdowns;
  • As public spending is channeled to tackle the pandemic, funding for other critical health priorities is likely to decrease;
  • A decline in productivity may be accompanied by laying off workers and could fuel price increases due to the scarcity of commodities.

Read the full article, published online by Applied Health Economics and Health Policy at



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