Closed stores and restaurants in Istanbul show the profound impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on small and medium businesses. Photo: UNDP Turkey/Levent Kulu

 

New York – The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and firms from global professional services network PwC will join forces on private sector and finance strategies to help with the socio-economic recovery following COVID-19.

One of the main goals of the UNDP-PwC collaboration is the establishment of a global public-private partnership that can shape and execute a comprehensive response to COVID-19. As governments embrace game-changing policies to build back better, greener and more sustainably, the partnership is intended to lay the foundation for long-term collaboration that enables transformational change.

Through its presence in nearly 170 countries globally, and as the UN’s lead on socio-economic recovery, UNDP has been at the forefront of country needs assessments, surveys of which have revealed profound impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. In Turkey, for example, as many as 48 percent of businesses indicated that remaining resources would only be able to sustain them for three months, according to a UNDP report. In the western Balkans,  a World Bank study shows more than 50 percent of small and medium businesses had to close operations, while those that remained open saw activities plunge. Partnership with the private sector is therefore seen as a critical component to a transformational socio-economic recovery.

"The speed and scale of COVID-19's impact require coordinated, multi-sector, multi-stakeholder approaches tailored to specific country contexts. Governments require support at both the global and national levels, and the private sector has a crucial role to play bringing significant knowledge and capacity to support such efforts", said Marcos Neto, Director of the UNDP Finance Sector Hub.

The most severe and widespread economic crisis since the Great Depression, the economic fallout of COVID-19 continues to reverberate globally, with knock on impacts felt across each and every of the Sustainable Development Goals, from education to biodiversity.

PwC will play an instrumental role in supporting the design and establishment of a flagship initiative of UNDP’s Private Sector Response. Additionally, PwC will help develop finance and policy solutions, and coordinate multi-stakeholder engagement.

 “We are delighted to be partnering with the UNDP on this vital initiative.  If we are to secure sustainable growth following the widescale impact of the pandemic, it is crucial that the public and private sectors are able to come together, to learn from each other and from the experiences of other countries as they build the economies of tomorrow,” said Agnieszka Gajewska, Partner, PwC Poland.

PwC’s partnership on this project with the UNDP is led by PwC Poland and supported by PwC Canada, PwC Hungary, PwC India, PwC Norway, PwC Middle East and PwC UK.

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