The world economy took a nasty turn during this global Covid-19 pandemic. Schools, colleges, museums, business organizations have all been shut down. Even private businesses like supermalls, movie theatres, restaurants have all been deserted. Covid-19 or the novel coronavirus disease spreads at an alarming rate and there is no vaccine for it till date. Social distancing and self-isolation are thus a must to help slow the spread or flatten the curve of coronavirus outbreak. The public have thus locked themselves inside their homes practicing self-quarantine with their families and loved ones. This recession will surely affect all economic sectors like financial markets, manufacturing, entertainment, retail, tourism and science and technology.
The whole world currently is in a state of self-imposed strict lockdown to reduce social interaction. According to WHO, there are 2,078,277 coronavirus infected cases and 138,101 total global deaths till date. Thus, we should certainly not take this global pandemic lightly. Among all the losses caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, economic decline is beyond doubt one and rather profound. It has left a gloomy effect on the average world economy. And as it is in most economic crisis cases, the poor are more affected than the rich. Poorer countries are suffering more than first world countries, as they mostly depend on richer countries for economic survival. The worldwide lockdown is as a result taking a major toll in their economy.
Economists all around the world have speculated the world economic growth to be cut by half in 2020 compared to earlier predictions. An April report regarding Covid-19 states that the number of poor and food insecure people is likely to increase by 2 percent of the world population which sums up to 14 million people. Africa and South Asia comprise of most of the global poor and thus suffer most in terms of economic survival. Africa relies on trade more than South Asia so a trade shock would affect Africa more whereas South Asia is prone to be affected on non-agricultural sectors.
Fears of Covid-19 pandemic’s impact on the global economy have rocked the global markets dropping stock prices and bond yields. In a cnbc report last month, it explains how the major economies of the global market have been affected by the pandemic so far. There is plenty of damage even which AI couldn’t help solve. This projection chart by the OECD shows the downgraded economic growth projections for countries with China shown suffering the largest magnitude of downfall for its domestic product growth.
All economic sectors like financial markets, manufacturing, entertainment, retail, restaurants, science and technology have been adversely affected. However, travel and tourism industry seems to be the sector that has been affected most by the Covid-19 pandemic. Tourism sector which thrives on the movement of people has encountered the heaviest loss of all due to worldwide imposed lockdown and travel restrictions. Nations worldwide have shut down their airports and airlines causing unemployment rates in travel industry to hike up leaving workers crushed.
Workers whose jobs demand them to be in places where large crowds gather have no jobs to earn from anymore. Low wage workers like retail and restaurant workers are left without any source of income to fend for themselves. Simple things like paying for rent and food seems nearly impossible. There is no provision of paid leave during this quarantine to these workers and working from home is out of the question. The population who were able to work for a living before now are jobless and broke.
Education systems worldwide seem to suffer the least due to the Covid-19 pandemic compared to other fields. Schools, colleges and other educational institutions have suffered due to closures but are using alternative methods. They have implemented online learning tools in order to continue with the teaching and learning process. Few students and teachers are attesting the fact that some online classes are almost as good as the classes that they attend in schools. Online courses are getting popular now more than ever during this quarantine. Teachers can easily reach students now where before they might have easily been missed in a classroom full of hundred students.
In recent years, we have seen a rapid growth of online businesses worldwide. At this time, we can see tons of organizations engaged in providing online services and products. Big business companies are also opting for online measures to resume work during this Covid-19 quarantine. Most companies have provided their employees the option to work from home where applicable. Various web applications such as Zoom, Skype and Google Meet have proven to be helpful while holding important business meetings online. Lots of companies are choosing to go online in order to provide their services to clients and customers. Most small businesses whereas cannot opt to run their business online as it is simply not feasible.
The world economy is definitely not the same due to this global pandemic of Covid-19. We are accounting for losses everywhere. Aware of the mounting costs this global pandemic has caused us, we need to remember that our physical well-being is still the top priority. Staying home in isolation is definitely new for a lot of us. This could take a toll to a person’s emotional and mental health. But taking proper precautions and preventive measures and working together for the common good will surely help us rid the world of this disease. Keeping yourself and your environment clean is a must. The best thing we need to do right now is to stay home, stay safe and wait for this tiring period to end.
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