The COVID-19 pandemic outbreak across the globe as well as in Ghana has had a negative impact on the economies of all countries globally due to the closure of businesses such as; manufacturing industries, schools,shopping malls, airports, boarders among others.
This impact has brought forth the discussion on how on how the world’s economy will look post covid-19.
Former deputy Minister of Transport and Special Aide to former President HE John Dramani Mahama Hon. Joyce Bawah Mogtari contributing to the debate of how the world’s economy would look post covid-19 has also written an opinion tilted ” Our world post-COVID”
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In her write up, she indicated that examining the global effect of Covid-19 and wondering what our society would be like post the pandemic, she noted that Covid-19 has indeed set the country back, economically, culturally and socially and also threatens to destabilize many businesses especially small business enterprises.
BELOW IS JOYCE BAWAH MOGTARI’S WRITEUP TITLED ” OUR WORLD POST-COVID”
Our world post-COVID
I have been examining the global effect of Covid-19 and wondering what our society would be like post the pandemic. One thing is clear: our world will never be the same again.
Listening to President Mahama a few days ago and I was struck by his views about Ghana in the 1970s and Ghana now.
In 1970, Ghana’s Gross National Product was far higher than its Gross Domestic Product. It is interesting to note that Ghanaian businesses had 70% of Market share and foreign-owned businesses controlled the remaining 30%. Ghanaian Enterprises have come a long way.
However, Covid-19 has indeed set us back, economically, culturally and socially. It threatens to destabilize many businesses especially small business enterprises with many struggling to absorb their risks as a result of Covid-19.
The threat to small businesses, the threat to jobs, the threat to livelihood simply means that this pandemic threatens our very existence as a people. We must, as a matter of necessity, therefore, engage widely in order to find out what methods, if any, will enable us sustain our businesses, sustain our livelihoods and secure our country.
Today, more than any other time in our living history, our basic survival has become a highlighted human rights issue with the onset of Covid-19. Nonetheless, just as humanity on countless occasions encountered and overcame adversity, we can overcome this too. There have been various viewpoints espoused by many and there are also several models we can draw from.
We can learn from how Nigeria recovered from the Biafra wars. We can take lessons from how the then Gold Coast recovered from the pandemic of 1918-20, and we can also draw inspiration and lessons from how Rwanda recovered after the genocide and many other examples too many to list here.
Undoubtedly, the context within which we view this pandemic and its ramifications and our approach to a long-term restructuring will be critical to our survival. In the absence of a robust banking system, a rather unstable economy, as recently confirmed by the Finance Minister, and an even more expensive reliance on imports means that Ghana will suffer dire consequences of this pandemic.
Germany, one of the worlds most industrialized countries, has gone into a recession. The UK today cuts a lonely figure the US itself is obviously threatened by global events and China being the purveyor of the novel Coronavirus has been brought almost to a standstill.
The whole logistics chain especially transportation has been gravely affected. Given what has happened to the superpower, industrialised countries, one wonders what will be the fate of the not so industrialized nations, faced with poverty, job losses, harsh economic conditions and a stifling global economic climate.
COVID-19 has exposed the weaknesses of our economic fundamentals so far, as exporters of primary goods and importers of finished products. But with innovative leadership and a belief in especially our enterprising and dynamic young people, we can, and we should turn the wheels of the African Economy back on track.
On the flip side, service companies such as Amazon have thrived enormously under the novel Coronavirus thanks to lockdown and renewed online shopping and delivery services. The packaging industries, the food industries are key industries which have slowly spread across the country. Key sectors that have performed badly across the world are the Entertainment and Tourism industries with reduced and renewed travel restrictions and border closures bringing the entire tourism sector to a standstill.
As Covid-19 forces a significant change in habits of consumers and a renewed demand for online transactions even here in Ghana, some new enterprises will spring up post Covid-19 and we must be ready when they do. As a people we must innovate to survive, be more creative and find ways to reposition and realign our business models to suit the new normal.
There is light at the end of the tunnel as we have seen. Production of protective gear and equipment, hand-sanitizers and tissue paper are thriving even under Covid. We have also seen increased demand for pharmaceutical products such as basic vitamins which serve as immune boosting solutions to fighting Covid-19. And frequent washing of hands with soap under running water has become a part of the sanitary practices of many.
The world will change after Covid 19. Ghana as we used to know it would experience its own metamorphosis. So will the citizens who live in it.
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