The cost of the coronavirus pandemic could reach as much as $8.8 trillion, or almost 10% of global gross domestic product, and between 158 million to 242 million jobs could be lost globally, with 70% of those in Asia and the Pacific, according to the ADB.

The report, Updated Assessment of the Potential Economic Impact of COVID-19, finds that economic losses in Asia and the Pacific could range from $1.7 trillion under a short containment scenario of 3 months to $2.5 trillion under a long containment scenario of 6 months, with the region accounting for about 30% of the overall decline in global output. 

Economic losses in Southeast Asia could range between $163.2 and $252.9 billion depending on the containment scenario.

Under the short and long containment scenarios, the report notes that border closures, travel restrictions, and lockdowns that outbreak-affected economies implemented to arrest the spread of COVID-19 will likely cut global trade by $1.7 trillion to $2.6 trillion.

Global employment decline will be between 158 million and 242 million jobs, with Asia and the Pacific comprising 70% of total employment losses.

Labor income around the world will decline by $1.2 trillion to $1.8 trillion—30% of which will be felt by economies in the Asia and the Pacific region, or between $359 billion and $550 billion.

adb covid estimate052020
COVID-19 Economic Impact Could Reach $253 Billion in Southeast Asia, says ADB 5

“This new analysis presents a broad picture of the very significant potential economic impact of COVID-19,” said ADB Chief Economist Yasuyuki Sawada. “It also highlights the important role policy interventions can play to help mitigate damage to economies. These findings can provide governments with a relevant policy guide as they develop and implement measures to contain and suppress the pandemic, and lessen its impacts on their economies and people.”

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Bangkok Correspondent for Siam News Network. Editor at Thailand Business News

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