The COVID-19 pandemic has fundamentally altered global mobility, having brought the world to a halt. Many countries have implemented coronavirus-related travel restrictions and border shutdowns, creating an unprecedented impact on mobility.
Clearly, COVID-19-related disruptions have impacted the ease of global migration and are likely to have longer-term impacts as the world battles to contain this global pandemic.
This article will examine the impact of COVID-19 on Global Migration and an outlook of significant changes that are taking place and will continue to take place soon.
Over the years, economies, cultures, and populations of the world have become increasingly interdependent as a result of cross-border trade in goods and services, technology, and flow of investment, people, and information, enabled by technological advancement. However, nations and individuals have had to scramble for safety with the advent and rapid spread of the coronavirus.
The virus has extended beyond its origin, across borders, nations, generations and social strata, ravaging the society and leaving catastrophic damage in its wake. Incidentally, the same advancement, which had enabled cross-border travels at previously unimaginable speeds and volume, has increased the global spread of the virus.
Various governments across the world have implemented measures to halt the spread of the virus in their countries. Such measures include suspending international travel, shutting down airspace and airports, closing land borders, and launching lockdown procedures. For instance:
On August 12, China eased Covid-19 travel restrictions for Europeans. The new rules will allow European passport holders from 36 countries - including France, Germany and the UK - with a valid residence permit to apply for a Chinese visa without an invitation letter.
The Government has also announced plans to resume operation of international flights at the Lagos and Abuja airports from 5 September 2020.
The supply of migrant labour, which is the driving force of a globalized economy and thus an essential element of the global economy, has been adversely affected by the global pandemic and the attendant closure of borders implemented to curb the spread of the virus.
As a result, the working world has been forced to switch from business as usual to cautious travel, office closures, and work-from-home guidelines, in addition to implementing protocols for handwashing, and use of sanitizers and facemasks.
Some measures that have been taken to mitigate the economic impact of the COVID-19 strain on businesses include the following:
The COVID-19 pandemic is a humanitarian challenge that will have lasting effects on how people live and work. As many parts of the world cautiously reopen by easing travel restrictions and lockdown policies, there are signs that the following would take place in the near future:
There is no gainsaying the fact that the COVID-19 pandemic has changed the world forever. However, it is not all doom and gloom as people will become resilient and would continue to evolve to address this challenge and future challenges to ensure continued survival.
We must stay ahead of the curve by embracing the new normal, because “the pandemic represents a rare but narrow window of opportunity to reflect, reimagine, and reset our world.” - Mr. Klaus Schwab, Founder and Executive Chairman of World Economic Forum.
For more information, please contact:
KPMG in Nigeria
© 2021 KPMG Professional Services, a partnership registered in Nigeria and a member firm of the KPMG global organization of independent member firms affiliated with KPMG International Limited, a private English company limited by guarantee. All rights reserved.
For more detail about the structure of the KPMG global organization please visit https://home.kpmg/governance.