“We shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing groups, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills, we shall never surrender.” Historical speech delivered by Sir Winston Churchill on 4 June 1940. As the world is at war with coronavirus, Donald Trump labeled himself a wartime president, while Emmanuel Macron declared that France is “at war” with COVID- 19. The outbreak brought terrible sufferings in China as it is continuing along with a significant scar and slowed down economy and in the first quarter of 2020 it will leave a deep mark on the economy for the upcoming years.
The government’s anti-virus czar has called people of all the nations to equip themselves with a “war economy” not only to confront the disease but also to face the upcoming expected problems.
CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC WILL TURNDOWN THE GLOBAL ECONOMY
The calamity of the disease recalls the wartime urgent requirements and emergencies. There should be an increase in the production of personal protective equipment (PPE), test kits, hospital beds, ventilator machines, nebuliser medication for asthmatic patients as asthma attacks can exacerbate due to COVID-19, recommended medicine stock, sanitisers, gloves and large number of medical camps and portable isolation wards. War economy needs millions of helping hands and volunteers. The effects of a lockdown on an economy is in many ways opposite to the wartime economy. Injuries and dead people in the war times portray a different picture than the lockdown due to a pandemic but in both cases starvation and hunger can lead to a bitter end.
“We will fight the coronavirus pandemic jointly as a nation as no government can overcome this alarming situation alone” said Imran khan to media during his visit to Balochistan. “Pakistan had meagre sources. The government is raising funds because the economic impact of the coronavirus crises will further worsen and nobody can predict whether this virus will go on for six months or eight months or even the next year” said PM during a telethon.
The coronavirus pandemic will turn the global economic growth “sharply negative” International Monetary Fund (IMF) has warned. According to UN 81% of the world’s force of 3.3 billion people had had their place of work fully or partly closed. Secretary general Angel Gurría said that economies were suffering a bigger shock than after the 9/11 terror attacks of 2001 or the 2008 financial crisis.
EFFECTS OF CORONAVIRUS ON AGRICULTURE
Agriculture; the backbone of the economy, can be hit by COVID-19 to an extent that it can result in a gargantuan amount of decrease in the production of crops and therefore the security of supply. Many of the potential problems related to COVID-19 are impossible to predict. The delivery of fertilisers and pesticides via international markets may become a problem. Simultaneously, the seeds may not be sown in time and crops may not harvest which will eventually cause the economy to collapse.
SAFEGUARDING POLICY MAKERS OF ECONOMIES
It is extremely important to safeguard stable businesses via well planned strategies. Policymakers must support vulnerable households and smaller businesses to mitigate the impact of this severe shock. It can be a hard choice but not impossible for the sake of economies.
All the efforts made to overcome the horrendous consequences of COVID-19 can be effective if people and the authorities observe unity and cooperate with each other in these challenging times, nationally and internationally.