What happens when Brazil’s coronavirus emergency aid ends?

Brazil cannot afford its Covid-19 emergency aid program. But how can the country avoid leaving tens of millions without any income at all?

coronavirus emergency aid ends
People in line waiting for food donations in Belo Horizonte. Photo: Luis War/Shutterstock

“BRL 600 (USD 110) is too much. Someone in the Economy [Ministry] mentioned BRL 200. I think that is too little, but we can reach a middle ground,” said President Jair Bolsonaro on Wednesday, when talking about his wishes to extend the coronavirus emergency salary Congress created back in March. 

Forced into action to offset the economic effects of the Covid-19 pandemic, Brazil created the broadest and largest cash-transfer project in its history. In just five months, the Treasury Department has spent BRL 254 billion (USD 46 billion) to provide income to vulnerable people who would otherwise have next...

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