Small businesses and poorer countries are being pushed out of trade networks due to supply chain frictions caused by the pandemic, the WTO chief has said.

Christophe Barrault

Christophe Barraud, Chief Economist and Strategist at Market Securities, shared an article about World Trade Organization (WTO) Director General Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala warning of continued bottlenecks in supply chains. global supply. She believes Covid-19 restrictions and logistical issues are hitting poorer countries and smaller businesses the hardest.

A former World Bank second-in-command told an audience in Paris that higher transaction costs risked squeezing poorer countries, even if some of the Covid-induced supply chain problems have been resolved. She also said the supply chain disruptions were meant to be short and temporary, but it’s taking much longer than expected.

Okonjo-Iweala previously said in October that supply chain pressures would persist for several months, and in November that the issues are transitory and expected to end before the end of 2022. However, the emergence of the Omicron variant in late November stopped production. and transportation in China and also led to global travel restrictions. This has forced the WTO to push back on expectations of a return to normality.

The WTO is expected to convene a meeting of business leaders, ministers and trade experts in March this year, to discuss how to ease persistent blockages in global supply chains.

Konstantin Gurdgiev

Constantin Gurdgiev, an economist and professor based in Dublin, Ireland, and former editor of Business and Finance magazine, retweeted an article about huge volumes of health-threatening Covid-19 hospital waste. Discarded syringes, used test kits and old vaccine vials from the Covid-19 pandemic have piled up to create tens of thousands of tons of waste, according to a World Health Organization (WHO) report. medical conditions, threatening human health and the environment.

The pandemic has increased health care waste loads in facilities tenfold, according to WHO technical lead Maggie Montgomery. The material potentially exposes health workers to burns, needlestick injuries and pathogenic germs, experts say.

Montgomery also said the biggest risk from huge volumes of medical waste is air pollution, which is caused by waste burning at high temperatures that ultimately leads to the release of harmful carcinogens.

WHO officials also point to the overuse of gloves and personal protective equipment (PPE) during the pandemic and have called for reforms and investments to reduce the use of plastic for packaging and the use of reusable and recyclable personal protective equipment. According to the report, around 87,000 tonnes of PPE have been ordered through a UN portal through November 2021, most of which is believed to have ended up as waste.

Prof. S. Grossbard

Professor S Grossbard, an economist and professor emeritus of economics at San Diego State University, and a researcher at the Institute for the Study of Labor and the CESifo Institute, retweeted a post shared by economist Adan Murillo on the impact of the Covid-19 recession on Mexican households.

The study looked at changes in labor supply, earnings, and time allocation during the coronavirus pandemic in Mexico. An event study found that the Covid-19 recession was having a serious negative impact on Mexican households. For example, in the first month of the pandemic, employment fell by 17 percentage points. In addition, men have returned to their jobs faster than women, with their employment reaching original levels in the second quarter of 2021. Women, on the other hand, have faced persistent job losses during the pandemic.

On the household front, men also increased their time spent on household chores, while neither men nor women persistently increased their time caring for others. Instead, the children reduced their time spent on schoolwork by 25%.

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