#Covid19Zim: Are You Prepared For The New Economic Landscape

have the opportunity to work in a formal set-up at a strategic and global level. I also interact with the informal and ordinary Zimbabweans on a daily basis.

By Farai Kasese

My focus is on  exploring how the global economy affects the micro-economy (informal sector ), which constitutes the greater number of the Zimbabwean population.

I would like to look at the entire situation from a global perspective. Zimbabwe does not operate in isolation. Zimbabwe is a global player, which in-turn impacts us regionally and locally.
The following aspects are just food for thought, during and post the COVID-19 crisis.

Accelerated Human Capital Flight and
loss of skills in the country will become an area of concern, as we may have much of our human capital assets moving to European countries, the Americas and Asia, maybe even regionally. The cause and effect cycle will take place as there is massive loss of lives’ due to COVID-19 in these developed countries, which needs replacement. Our country is already in dire economic strains , hence our current skills will be motivated to look for greener pastures in hope for a better present and future. Businesses need to think around this to ensure they retain or are able to replace the lost skills.

The educational curriculum has to gear-up in-order to fit this “new norma”, meaning new skills sets, new curriculum, modules etc (disaster and crisis management, epidemiology, mental health, technical degrees etc). As a country we have to gear up and anticipate the new landscapes being created now and post the crisis to ensure businesses are ahead and sustainable with the requisite human capital skills. The educational sector needs to come up with competence based curriculum which recognize the informal sectors skills, even at a global level.
Occupational and social psychology disorder
Mental health becomes a key component in ensuring businesses are sustainable. Loss of life is going to affect many, economically and psychologically. Loss of employment will also affect the psychological framework of many due to business closure.
Imagine a jobless CEO, which will be a case in many situations. The business and social landscape needs to change to focus on reintegration of these victims. Occupational and social psychology has to be redefined to look and address this issue of mental health
Governments’ may collapse
Businesses need to come out of this crisis standing and ready to run. They have to formulate strategies to ensure continuity, sustainability or jump-start and re-jig. By doing this, businesses will stimulate the economy, however from the flip side of the coin, government needs to create a conducive macro-economy through positively impacting policies, so that the entities can survive.
Governments’ may collapse as their main revenue streams are choked should COVID-19 crisis continue. No outflows from the various economic sectors hence malnourishing governments’ already shoe-string budgets. Currently most governments are supported by the formal sector which may not survive this crisis. However, the informal sectors will have to become focal in supporting the governments globally.
Anti-infection mode of channel distribution
New spaces are going to emerge and a new landscapes will be carved on trade channels. The biggest question will be on to tap into the informal sectors especially those without remote access? Government and private sectors need to incentivize the informal sector to be enumerated, thereby creating structure in a very fluid economy. This allows policy makers to understand the implications of their policies and not make them “blanket policies” (cause and effect)
Lastly we don’t know when we will come out this crisis. Businesses need to think around how to get their goods and services to consumers and users (especially non-essential goods). Online stores, amalgamated delivery services may become the new mode of channel distribution, new business models that clearly demonstrate safety, removing any chances of infection and transmission of Covid-19, can be presented to governments to stimulate economic activity.

I hope this stimulates positive conversations that are thought provoking to ensure businesses survive through these turbulent times.

#Staysafe #Restrategizing Refining Recapcitating

Farai Kasese
Business Executive

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