Foreign Ministers of Central Asia and the EU Discussing Joint Actions to Eliminate the Consequences of COVID-19. Photo from SNG. Today.
The social and economic impacts of the novel coronavirus are amplified in Central Asia, where healthcare resources are limited, supply chains are vulnerable, and government revenues are dependent on a narrow range of commodities produced by extractive industries. While the spread of the disease in Central Asia is moderate, the economic repercussions are more serious. With cross-border trade volumes and commodity prices at historic lows due to COVID lockdown measures, the region’s national governments are straining to implement policy measures that address both disease containment and economic stimulus – a difficult balancing act that if executed poorly could significantly exacerbate the consequences of coronavirus.
The resilience of the region, or the ability of its people, communities, governments and systems to withstand the impacts of negative events and to continue to grow despite them, is being put to the test. The ITIC report, authored by Dr. Ariel Cohen and Mr. James Grant , discusses four primary areas of resilience-building that, if addressed, will enable Central Asia to not only weather the remainder of the COVID storm, but emerge with stronger and more competitive economies that can continue to improve quality of life for its citizens.