The pandemic’s political impact.
Russian President Vladimir Putin is praising the performance of Russian economy and healthcare system in 2020. Indeed, Russian GDP is likely to have declined in 2020 by only 4 percent. Russia’s sovereign fund, the National Welfare Fund, stands at 12 percent of GDP. Russia’s official count of COVID deaths is 60 thousand – lower than France’s in absolute and hence 2.5 times as low in per capita terms. According to Mr. Putin, Russia’s vaccine Sputnik V was the first registered vaccine in the world. Not only Russia has started mass vaccinations already in 2020, it has also sent 300 thousand doses to Argentina. Some of these statements are correct, some are misleading, and some are outright false. Read Sergei Guriev’s highlights for Terra Nova below.