Coronavirus: Sub-Saharan Africa could lose up to $4 billion worth of exports even without any confirmed cases

President Muhammadu Buhari and his South African counterpart, Cyril Ramaphosa  [Twitter/@NigeriaGov]
  • The outbreak of Coronavirus will have significant impacts on Sub-Saharan Africa economies.
  • In 2019, China’s trade with Africa stood at $208 billion.
  • The report states that while Sub-Saharan Africa could lose up to $4 billion worth of exports, the impact of the outbreak could cost the global economy around $360 billion.

As the spread of coronavirus reached multiple countries, Sub-Saharan Africa could lose up to $4 billion worth of exports, according to a new report by the Overseas Development Institute (ODI).

Globally, the impact is estimated to cost the global economy around $360 billion.

In 2019, China’s trade with Africa stood at $208 billion, while exports reached $113.2 billion, according to China’s General Administration of Customs.

According to the report, the outbreak of the novel coronavirus will have significant impacts on the poorest economies, including Nigeria and other Sub-Saharan African countries, even if they do not have confirmed cases.

The paper, titled; 'Economic vulnerabilities to health pandemics: Which countries most vulnerable to the impact of Coronavirus,' examines the transmission channels and identifies individual countries that are most vulnerable to the economic impacts of the coronavirus outbreak.

ODI report looked at health connectivity, economic links, and constrained fiscal resources as three major impact channels. It cited Angola, Congo, Sierra Leone, Lesotho, and Zambia, as the most exposed countries to the impact of Coronavirus where 60% of Angola’s total exports are to China and 10% of tourists are from China.

The report advised African countries, most especially low- and middle- income countries, to lower economic exposure and increase resilience to the outbreak moving forward. It also urged nations to see the importance of diversifying export partners and funding sources beyond China.

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