Intelligence Brief: How Is COVID-19 Affecting Emerging Markets?
By Jan Stryjak
The Covid-19 (coronavirus) pandemic and resulting widespread shift in working patterns and increased demand for home entertainment has thrust communications and the resiliency of telecoms networks to the fore. The outbreak has, and will continue to have, sweeping effects on all aspects of the global economy. As social distancing and travel disruption continue to impact supply and demand, a reduction of global GDP growth by 4.5 percentage points is expected in 2020, with a direct knock-on effect to the telecoms sector among others.
However, the impact of Covid-19 could well be magnified in emerging markets, which are disproportionately impacted by falling commodity prices, reduced international investment, decreased incoming remittances, rising foreign debt burden and large itinerant worker populations. So, while much of the media coverage has focussed on the shifting epicentres, first China, then Europe and the US, here we want to examine how the outbreak will affect the development of the mobile ecosystem in countries perhaps less well equipped to deal with it, despite admirable efforts to cushion the impact.
Photo courtesy of StockSnap.