The world, as we know, it will never return to where it was. The world was seemingly working reasonably well. Globalisation had been working with manufacturing and other industries running. Let’s not even dive in the rise of populism or something similar — that’s for another day. In general, the world was somehow working up until COVID19 showed up.
The disease showed up in China and began to cause lockdowns and shutting down of economies in many jurisdictions. Then, the supply chain stopped or at least severely hindered. Following that stoppage, more and more companies furloughed people or let go of their people. Governments were jockeying with their national banks to inject funds into the economy through monetary policy.
What’s important to note is while Governments were jockeying with monetary policy levers, each country began doing its own thing. Many countries decided to shut down for various reasons. Some countries like the US ignored the initial information and thus shut down too late. Still, Sweden took an entirely different approach and didn’t shut down at all. Sweden kept operating as if things were just fine and running normally. Regardless of the method, the virus’ end doesn’t appear on the horizon.
The virus’ end remains murky with some countries successfully bending the curve and others still experiencing an increase like the UK and the US. In the case of the UK, that may be due to reporting requirements. On the other hand, the US passed the 60,000 dead marks, which was only supposed to happen in August. Fact is that even though the virus may disappear the world order will never be the same.
We should be honest with ourselves that globalisation is weak. While we may want to look at in a rosy way, countries will always fend for themselves. Sure, some may band together either in a regional bloc, but that probably doesn’t last long. Everyone will always protect themselves before they help their neighbour. Indeed, exceptions may exist, but that’s not the status quo.
Also, those with less economic leverage may take more severe action to prevent the spread of infection while the OECD club may not. Fact is that those who don’t take the next crises as dangerous as this one may not fair so well. And, the global framework will be altered and not available to support since we have diverged to an each for themselves approach.
We should take this crisis as a learning curve and predictor for the future — we have to be ready and take care of ourselves. Again, the intention is not to appear grim and nationalistic only but rather that we wake up and realise that the global framework is diminished and probably not working as it was before. Finally, we should always make sure that we are prepared and have the right leaders in place.