The outbreak of the pandemic of COVID-19 has created a global health crisis that has had a deep impact on the way we perceive our world and our everyday lives. Economies are put on hold while the humanity’s focus is shifting to public health and safety. Covid-19 continues to spread rapidly around the globe and business challenges are unprecedented.
Although the pandemic of Covid-19, sooner or later, will come to an end, it will have adverse effects on the global economy. To this end, we are all forced to act fast and undertake tough decisions, but simultaneously, it is critical to take into consideration the long-term consequences of our actions after the end of the pandemic of Covid-19 because today’s decisions will become our tomorrow’s realities.
The World Economy
The world economy is under a considerable pressure with the shipping and trade sectors being greatly affected. Due to the pandemic of Covid-19, the international shipping industry is currently facing a drop in demand, which may result in a 3-5% reduction in marine trade.
The major victims of the industry are the cruise and container ships, followed by the bulk carrier, whilst tankers enjoy high freight rates due to reasons linked to the collapse of oil prices. Another main problem concerns the marine technicians and their movement on ships located abroad and the fact that many shipyards or shipbuilding equipment manufacturers have closed or are short-staffed. As a consequence, backlogs related to ships started to accumulate and will have to be instigated and resolved en masse when we actually return to the norms.
It is an undeniable fact that our hard work is far from over, but there is a light at the end of the tunnel. We are all witnessing a more human-centered approach to the aforementioned crisis where global solidarity and strong international cooperation become the response to the socio-economic impacts of Covid-19. While a sharp recession is expected in the first three quarters of this year, it is still too early to be able to assess and predict the results of the said global crisis.
However, thinking in a more optimistic scenario, the sharp resumption of the global economy and a subsequent sudden increase in the shipping demand are likely to cause an economic prosperity in the shipping industry. To this end, we should keep a positive attitude and march forward with determination and hope, even if it looks strange on the surface and different to what we once knew.