Coronavirus outbreak fallout… analyst predicts major economic slowdown
RUNDU - The Covid-19 outbreak will cause a major slowdown in economic activity in Namibia, as it has done elsewhere in the world, local economic analyst Mally Likukela said this week
Likukela in an interview with Nampa said the biggest feature of the coronavirus is that it removes the human factor from the economic equation and the absence of humanity from businesses equals no business.
“For Namibia, the virus will delay or frustrate the economic recovery that was beginning to appear. Namibia will remain in recession for a much longer period than anticipated,” he said.
The economist said that almost every sector of the economy would be affected because of the absence of activities.
Key sectors such as the tourism and transport sectors, he noted, have already begun to count the costs as vacationers have cancelled trips because people are encouraged to stay in one place and avoid social contact, while public gatherings of more than 50 people are also banned.
Furthermore, the entertainment and recreational sectors have also been hit since major social and national events ended up being postponed while others were cancelled, he said.
Likukela advised that all safety guidelines should be followed while researchers try to establish the depth of the crisis as it unfolds.
Government this week announced a raft of new measures to help contain the virus, including placing Windhoek, Okahandja and Rehoboth as well as the Erongo region on lockdown from 27 March until 16 April.
Government has requested the general public to remain indoors and avoid public gatherings like bars, shebeens, nightclubs and markets.
Workers offering essential services would be allowed to operate, however, government encouraged civil servants, state-owned enterprises and those in the private sector to work from home.
The authorities have also banned travelling to all countries for 30 days.
Earlier, the government had imposed several measures to help curb the spread of Covid-19. These include shutting all private and public schools.
Government has so far committed about N$124 million to help fight the virus, which has so far claimed thousands of lives worldwide.
President Hage Geingob during the 30th independence anniversary last Saturday indicated that government was working on an economic recovery plan to assist both consumers and businesses during the coronavirus outbreak.
- Additional reporting by own reporter - Nampa
Forecast… Local economist
Mally Likukela. Photo: Nampa
2020-03-26 09:02:39 | 5 days ago