Oybek MAKHMUDOV, PhD
The COVID-19 creates vulnerabilities for the whole global economic situation, which gets many challenges from health insecurity and promotes a geopolitical rivalry between global actors. The South Asia is geo-strategically a significant region with high potential. The South Asian region is close neighbor with China.
In COVID-19 period, going the interplay of trade, business and geopolitics will be influenced by changing global narratives around China, and the tensions between US-China would grow and the geopolitical shifting world order on the future trajectory of South Asia and China’s presence in the region.
However the economic profiles for South Asia are not so positive. South Asia will have some low economic rate of the last tens years. Because according to forecast, estimate that regional growth will down on less on 2 percent in 2020.1 For instance for the Afghanistan, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, the range of their forecast GDP growth for this fiscal year is in negative level. In such a scenario, the whole region will have problems with their national economy. This crisis will promote an inequality in South Asia. Analysis of the expert work, show that poor populations have a higher likelihood from their lost work, and domestic migrant workers who had escaped rural poverty by finding work in cities are being forced back into rural poverty again. That’s why the major poor population has a high risk of food and health insecurity. The statesman should consider innovative policies, regarding their rapid response; the focus has been rightly on mitigating the spread of COVID-19. While doing that, conditions should be created to high speed up the economy, once countries emerge out of the immediate health crisis. A combination of temporary work programs and a moratorium on debt servicing and rent payments could help prepare for the restart of the economies. After tackling the rapid COVID-19 threat, South Asian countries must keep their sovereign debt sustainable through fiscal prudence and debt relief initiatives. On long term perspectives the South Asia would do well if diversifying their interna-tional connections, while there are great opportunities to expand digital technologies for payment systems and distant learning to unlock remote areas in South Asia.
Advisor Association for the Study of Ethno-GeoPolitics, Bakertilly Uzbekistan
1 Source: World Bank report April 2020.