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Category: Opinion and Analysis

 

 

By Annisa Essack

29/01/2020

The announcement of the Coronavirus deaths in China saw global stock markets rattled as growing investor anxiety over the fallout from the rapidly escalating coronavirus crisis in China.

The fallout was felt more acutely in South Africa as the JSE plunged by as much as 2.6%, leaving investors clearly worried about the exposure that many South Africans have to China.  It is after all the source of the deadly viral disease that threatens to slow economic growth in the world’s second-largest economy.

Concerns are mounting, as the death toll rises and thousands are being infected, that China will not be able to halt the spread of the virulent coronavirus in the short term.

The potential impact on human life and health will be significant, if not devastating, however, the virus will also have severe economic consequences across the globe. Especially vulnerable is Africa with its dependency on exporting commodities.

The possible economic ramifications for Africa

While the economic impact of the virulent virus is felt in several African sectors, we don’t know to what extent African governments will have to battle the virus in their own countries and the impact this will have on Sino-African economics ties.

But the positive spinoff could be the impetus that could prompt forward-thinking policymakers to create or expedite plans to diversify trade and investment relationships.