Apr 09, 2020

The Ever-Increasing Panic of the Pandemic

Sometimes it’s inconceivable how a tiny thing, invisible to the naked eye has the power to eradicate the most evolved species on the planet. A nanoparticle that can leave all the world organisations, governments, and armed forces baffled. A speck that can topple down trillions of dollars’ worth world economy into rubble, in a matter of days. And the presence of this very minuscule virus, the coronavirus, has made the impossible, possible – rendering the World Health Organisation speechless on the complexity of the virus.

With hundreds of people dying every day, thousands of new cases being detected every week, and literally, billions of people staying at home for months now, we are truly in unfamiliar territory. The governments are issuing billions of funds to provide necessities and insurance for the people, but what’s worrying is the repercussions of the same on businesses. The International Monetary Fund also issued a statement wherein they estimate that this pandemic will cause a global recession in 2020 that will be much worse than the one that hit in 2008. The hospitality, tourism, aviation, and the auto industry, to just name a few, have already started to feel its impact. It has initiated a dominos effect which seems very tricky to control.

 

To get a better insight as to what people were thinking, we at Opinion Bureau, conducted a poll with 1,479 respondents. We asked them whether they think that COVID-19 will impact the global businesses and economy to which the majority responded with a resounding yes. 59.97% of these respondents are of the opinion that the economy will have to take a toll due to the pandemic and that too for a very long time to come. 23.66% of the respondents also agree that the economy will be hit but are positive that it will bounce back with a boost quickly. 14.20% of the respondents, on the other hand, believe that this is a temporary obstacle and it will recover soon. 1.15% of the respondents, however, think that COVID-19 has not had any serious impact on the economy.

 

In challenging times like these, when companies like Mahindra and Maruti are switching to manufacture ventilators instead of cars and luxury brands like Louis Vuitton are making hand sanitizers in their perfume factories, we asked what changes people were undertaking to keep themselves safe. Out of the 3,032 people we asked, 31.13% of them say that they are frequently washing their hands and using sanitizers to kill the virus and 17.15% of them are using a face mask to reduce the chances of coming in contact with the virus. 25.96% of the respondents are avoiding any social interactions and physical touch whereas 20.78% of the respondents are not travelling at all to keep themselves coronavirus-free. A small group of people, however, also thinks that COVID-19 is a media-hyped threat and therefore, they are continuing to lead their lives as if everything was normal.

 

Taking this discussion further, we asked 1,429 people what they thought of the steps taken by the government to prevent the spread of the virus. 65.01% of the respondents think that the government is undertaking all the possible measures whereas 24.21% of the respondents think that the steps are quite inadequate to deal with the current situation. 6.86% of the respondents feel that these preventive steps are only in the air; there is nothing substantial to back it up.

 

Coronavirus or COVID-19 is a disease that is testing the limits of all. With symptoms that seem like normal flu, it is not only creating unnecessary confusion but also instilling fear in the minds of all. And it is this uncertainty that is being reflected in the crashing of stock markets. The lockdowns have further slashed the sales resulting in piling up of stocks worth billions of dollars. It seems, therefore, that the public and private sectors will have to come together to fight the aftershocks of the pandemic. Be it in the form of interest rates being cut to providing a moratorium on the repayment of loans, every decision now will have the power to make or break the global economy as we know it.

 

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