Till now, the coronavirus has shaken the entire world, and the businesses of all sizes are feeling the heat.
When it comes to corona impacting our lives and businesses of all sizes, it’s not only China and neighboring countries, it has become a global health concern, and the entire world has been affected severely by this lethal pandemic.
Although working from homes, self-quarantining (worst case scenario), closing borders, not socializing, encaging ourselves at home, canceling all flights and city lockdown may turn out to be effective against Covid-19, but surely it is going to have a large impact of business irrespective of their sizes and their operating modes.
The fear of corona growing in our minds with every passing day is lowering the foot traffic leaving shops, restaurants, parks, travel businesses, and other activities stranded. People in the UK are hesitant about going outside, and this is why businesses are going to get a hit. The stock markets are showing bearish behavior, and the world economy is at stake.
Let’s now tell you how harsh corona has been in different business sectors in the UK.
Stock market fears
UK stock markets are experiencing the worst behavior showing a decline never seen since the Global Financial Crisis in 2008. Albeit, the markets have made a recovery thanks to the assurances from The Bank of England’s Mark Carney that various financial institutions will play their part in plummeting the terrible effects caused by the deadly coronavirus.
However, a large majority of people are of the view that Covid-19 will be responsible for another major recession around the globe. Already, many sectors are showing a decline due to the strong impact of this Chinese virus, made famous by the US president. Amongst them, one major role player in the economy of the UK is the hospitality industry.
Hospitality on hold?
Colin Neil, boss of Hospitality Ulster, based in Belfast, Northern Ireland, described the significance of sporting events like “The Six Nations” as a big attraction factor for people spending money in the pubs and other related facilities.
And now that it has been canceled as a precaution against corona, it could have a serious economic impact with local businesses deprived of being thousands of dollars.
Food delivery contagion
Another sector that is under the threat of financial losses and is the restaurant sector. With people not feeling comfortable going out and preferring to stay inside, the delivery chain is affected, and the shortage of employees is proving to be a big setback for restaurants.
Not to forget the food delivery brands which supply food items to the consumers’ home via online orders like Uber Eats, Deliveroo are going to suffer this mayhem rising from China.
It is a well-known fact that the country’s hospitality sector has employed thousands of people from European countries. This can end up in serious risk for the local residents as the recent return of these employees from the continent could pose a serious threat to them. With Europe becoming the new epicenter of the virus, a country like Italy experiencing more than 50% of the rise in corona cases, and a large number of people dying from it in Spain, is an alarming situation for the food industry in the UK.
Since the upsurge in takeaway culture from 2009, there have been countless cases of food poisoning, and a number of physicians are of the view that the food transporters are the main cause of this problem. In the current situation, food delivery drivers can once again be the reason for transmitting viruses and infection, which may force consumers to stop tapping the option of food delivery.
The CEO of Greggs, one of the finest and leading bakery chains in the UK, Roger Whiteside, is quite concerned about the breakout of this pandemic and what consequences it can have on the food industry in the times to come. Even though their last year was quite lucrative with the savory item seller achieving a 31.1% profit due to the addition of vegan products in their stores, Roger was worried about the future of small businesses, especially in the food sector.
Roger’s observations that the spread of coronavirus brings with it a decline in customer interest and confidence could be the voice of many people who are either in the industry for years or have just stepped in.
The travel and tourism industry is n another pillar in the UK economy, and this sector also could not save itself from the wrath of fatal respiratory virus. The big stalwarts like British Airways and Ryanair are releasing their employees due to a drop in ticket bookings and flight cancellations. On the other hand, Easyjet has imposed a pay freeze on staff owing to the decreasing demand from the consumers.
Other major travel companies like Saga are also feeling the heat of fast-growing corona as they have held the sale of one of their main company, Titan travel, estimated to be worth 100m.
Shipping shows signs of weakness
One of the biggest contributors to the UK economy, the shipping industry also has a sad story to tell. 80% of the goods all over the world are transported via ships, however, since the outbreak of this contagious virus, it is doing no good to the UK’s economy. Why? Because China homes most of the busiest ports and now that their factories are shut, and employees ordered not to produce new goods.
This has impacted the manufacturing and import/export sectors of not only China and its economy but millions of businesses relying on the material coming from there.
China is known to be the world’s largest exporter and third largest manufacturer. The closure of manufacturing units in China has had a direct impact on the manufacturing sector of countries that were linked to it.
Now all the businesses that were exporting their goods from Chinese factories are either experiencing long delays in their supplies, or they are told not to wait because of the short or no production. Due to the lack of confidence in Chinese consumers, British companies that exported luxury goods like whiskey and salmon are poorly affected. Another major loss to the UK economy.
Well, we hope this fearsome natural calamity, which has become a serious villain in the way of world development and economy, comes to an end, shorty. The UK economy is under immense pressure, and the business community awaits good news, pretty soon.