COVID-19 and Lock-Down Economy- Is It Disaster Diplomacy?


Coronavirus Disease 2019 may be considered as an economic disaster rather than the health emergency. Fully or partially, global economy is locked-down owing to the coronavirus outbreak. Universally well-known fact that Wuhan city being the epicenter of this predicament, spread across the globe; and made US worried to immediate develop the vaccine solution. US President Donald Trump announced that Roche Medical Company will launch the vaccine and millions of doses would be made ready from it. Also Swiss medical-device maker Thermo-Fisher collectively have nearly 2 million tests available, with more to come. US’s Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved the first commercial coronavirus test in the US. After a weeklong shortage of COVID’19 tests and limits on screening that have hampered officials’ ability to respond to the crisis, the first commercial test has received approval from FDA. Both tests received approval in less than 24 hours after Company submitted the application for approval. If we look at the International Product Life Cycle Theory, then this seems to be disaster diplomacy. Product Life Cycle Theory is an economic theory that was developed by Raymond Vernon in response to explain the observed pattern of international trade. The theory suggests that early in a product’s life-cycle all the parts and labor associated with that product come from the area where it was invented. After the product becomes adopted and used in the world markets, production gradually moves away from the point of origin. In some situations, the product becomes an item that is imported by its original country of invention.


As time goes, all coronavirus affected countries in the world would make a substantial budgetary provision for handling the health disaster as the World Health Organization has pronounced COVID19 a globally pandemic. Indian Prime Minister has already announced US $ 10 million for SAARC countries since this is the first pandemic caused by a novel coronavirus. We cannot claim enough that all countries can still change the course of this pandemic. This is the first pandemic that can be controlled. There’s been so much attention on one word. But these words matter much more prevention, preparedness and political leadership what exactly did SAARC countries leaders. Leaders determined to be together, to do the right things with calm & protect the citizens of SAARC region and the world as well. If we take a note on health issue, the confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus in the world has been raising day by day. Therefore, it would prompt the leaders of nations to make separate budgetary provisions to tackle the unexpected public health crisis. Amis these issues, questions are still unclear in the minds of the people.

Should it be seen as an economic emergency rather than the health disaster? Obviously, it is expected to cost the entire world economy; andif it continues to stay for a long time, then the global GDP will be affected by 0.45 percentage point at an annualized rate in the first quarter of this year and 0.15 percentage point in 2020. Look at Italy; which has extended its drastic measures to contain COVID’19 outbreak to the entire country. The move comes just two days after announcing rules limiting movement and commerce. Italy government has drastically limited non-essential travels within the country too, as well as pushing employers to allow workers to stay home. Classes in schools and universities are suspended until 3rdApril 2020 and gatherings are prohibited. Sporting events are cancelled as well, including the football championship matches. Italy has extended its virus quarantine rules across the entire country. This means limiting travel, urging workers to stay home and shuttering bars and restaurants by early evening. The country has now overtaken China for the number of daily deaths from coronavirus and the number of confirmed cases has reached over 20,000 as of last week.

The outbreak of the virus has also hit India’s manufacturing and exports worth $30 billion a year. Moody’s cut its economic growth forecast for India to 5.4% for 2020 from an earlier estimate of 6.6%, Also, 57 Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients (API)s of crucial antibiotics, vitamins, and hormones or steroids could go out of stock in case of a prolonged lockdown in China. China supplies 43% of India’s imports of the top 20 goods, that India buys mobile handsets ($7.2 billion), computers ($3 billion), integrated circuits, and other inputs ($7.5 billion), fertilizers ($1.5 billion), APIs ($1.4 billion) and antibiotics ($1.1 billion). 1) Govt may reduce remove higher import duties on certain products 2) The government may offer credit with a backstop facility(for Chinese imported goods) of guarantee for companies which have the capability to start immediate production (Kundu).

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