Coronavirus set in motion a major economic crisis that will burden societies for years to come, the head of the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) warned Thursday.
Angel Gurri stressed that the pandemic has led to third and most serious economic, financial, and social shock the 21st century has seen.
Stating that more than one-third of OECD households are financially insecure, Gurri said they would fall into poverty if they have to forgo three months of their income.
He added that spreading trade restrictions will worsen the situation.
"More broadly, they increase the risk of a more severe outbreak, as well as of a deeper and longer-lasting recession," Gurri said.
He urged governments to mount urgent and large-scale responses, to be taken at the sub-national, national, and international levels.
"The OECD calls for a sizeable, credible, internationally coordinated four-pronged effort to provide the necessary resources to deal with the immediate public health emergency, to buffer the economic shock and develop a path towards recovery," he said.
Touching on weaknesses in healthcare systems exposed by coronavirus, Gurri said: "Beyond the immediate health policy response, the world needs decisive and ambitious actions to mitigate the economic downturn and protect the most vulnerable."