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Travel, transport and catering sectors will lead Pakistan’s post-COVID recovery

Annotation 2020-09-04 093742

Recently, the federal government of Pakistan set a revenue target of Rs.4.963 trillion for the fiscal year 2020-2021. But to achieve the target, Pakistan will have to recover from the ravages of the novel coronavirus pneumonia by October 1.

If the pandemic cannot be controlled before the end of September, it will be difficult to achieve the revenue target, and the budget may have to be adjusted, the government has been warned by the relevant department.

In my opinion, it is quite difficult for Pakistan to achieve the revenue target, but as long as the federal government and the people of Pakistan have the determination to devote themselves to pandemic prevention and control and to economic recovery, it is not totally impossible. There is an idiom in China, "nothing is impossible", which means that under certain conditions, whether things can be done or not mainly depends on how people apply themselves to the task.

Pakistan is densely populated, with a high proportion of poor people and a large number of daily-income laborers. So, it is difficult to completely seal off the cities. According to the specific situation of his country, Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan has adopted the strategy of imposing a "smart lockdown", and the relevant government departments have formulated a series of standard operation procedures for pandemic prevention for all walks of life. Judging from the current situation, this strategy has achieved good results so far.

The pandemic has been controlled gradually. Data show that the growth curve of confirmed cases is tending to gradually level off, and more than 81% of the confirmed cases have recovered. This is due to the coordinated efforts of the federal and provincial governments. On the eve of the Bakr Eid festival, Prime Minister Khan had called on the people to celebrate simply and abide by the standard operating procedures for pandemic prevention. If COVID-19 continues to be controlled it will help Pakistan spur economic growth in an orderly manner.

Due to the appropriate policies of the government in response to COVID-19, the people of all walks of life have been making concerted efforts to overcome various economic difficulties. I firmly believe that Pakistan, China`s friendly neighbor, will eventually win the war against the novel coronavirus pneumonia and embark on a path of economic recovery. 

Some Pakistani friends have asked me which industries will be the first to recover in Pakistan when COVID-19 is over. This question is very interesting. When the pandemic started to spread, people were asking which industries would be most affected. When the pandemic is expected to end, people now start asking which industries will lead the recovery.

There is a saying in investment circles that "profit and loss are from the same source", which means that the reason why you make money and why you lose money is likely to be the same.

As far as I know, COVID-19 has had the most serious impact on the catering industry, retail industry and tourism industry, and then, once the pandemic is over, these industries will surely take the lead in recovery.

The reason is very simple. When COVID-19 is over, people may first think of enjoying delicious food in restaurants, experiencing offline shopping, traveling to other places or foreign countries to see the world. The flow of people and logistics will drive the recovery of the transportation industry, so I think the transportation industry will also be the first to recover.


Cheng Xizhong, visiting professor at Southwest University of Political Science and Law