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LatinNews Daily - 19 March 2021

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In brief: Brazil’s Bolsonaro issues decree to reinstate pandemic aid

* Brazil’s President Jair Bolsonaro has issued a decree (MP) to reimplement emergency handouts to vulnerable Brazilians in the context of the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic, known as the ‘auxílio emergencial’. This measure was made possible after congress approved a constitutional amendment last week which allows the government to bypass fiscal rules to fund this aid. According to the government, this new round of emergency aid will benefit 45.6m families at a cost of R$43bn (US$7.73bn) for four months from April; the monthly handouts will be limited to one per household, with the amount varying between R$150 for single-person households and R$375 for single mothers at the head of a household. This new iteration of the auxílio emergencial will be more limited than last year, when the measure reached around 68m Brazilians over nine months, at a cost of around R$300bn for the government.