By Luis Felipe López-Calva and Rebeca Grynspan

"The COVID-19 pandemic that is affecting the world has deepened in recent weeks in Latin America. The health, humanitarian, and economic aspects of this crisis, widely publicized have no historical precedent. Solving and rebuilding will take time and a lot of collective effort. However, as with the effects of the virus in organisms with pre-existing medical conditions, our societies are affected by pre-pandemic structural weaknesses: high inequality, fragmented social contracts, lean productivity and growth, low confidence in public institutions, and fiscal weakness. That is why the COVID-19 crisis in Latin America is not only a health and socio-economic crisis but also a governance crisis. A systemic shock that has exacerbated pre-existing structural conditions and, without a doubt, will deepen them if there is no determined and effective public action. As a systemic crisis, it also requires a systemic solution. This is what many of us have called the need for a new "social contract"."

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