Dar es Salaam - UNDP Tanzania in collaboration with the Economic and Social Research Foundation (ESRF) released a report on Socio-Economic Impact Assessment of COVID-19 on Tanzania.
"This pandemic has manifested itself to be more than a health crisis. Tackling COVID-19 is also a humanitarian and development crisis that is threatening to leave deep social, economic and political scars for years to come, particularly in countries already weighed down by fragility, poverty and conflict." - UNDP
What the report tells us
Both the report and the policy brief assesses the possible risks and impact pathways of COVID-19 on the economy, public finance and budgeting, poverty and inequality and vulnerable groups in Tanzania. The analysis assumes three scenarios:-
1. Best case scenario: where the current situation is maintained
2. Moderate scenario: where there is some modest escalation in infections and consequently in aversive reactions to the pandemic
3. Worst case scenario: the situation deteriorates further for an extended period of time
The assessment shows that, even under a 'limited or slow virus spread scenarios' there will still be severe shocks in the hospitality industry, exporters of manufactured and agricultural goods, transport and logistics, as well as the financial sector.
The priority of the Government and developemnt stakeholders must be to prevent contagion and support most vulnerable groups and firms in the most affected sectors and value chains. In the medium term, the aftermath of this crisis must be turned into an opportunity to put well-being at the centre, based on stronger social protection systems, better healthcare, more robust and inclusive public finances and implementing inclusive development strategies.
Commenting on the report, the UN Resident Coordinator, Zlatan Milisic said, "I commend UNDP Tanzania for taking a proactive step and for providing leadership in undertaking this Rapid Socio-Economic Impact Assessment which has resulted into this informative and insightful report." He further said, "It is my sincere hope the report will add value to the ongoing government efforts to curb the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic."
The Resident Coordinator has called upon the development partners in Tanzania to provide much needed support for immediate response to the pandemic and rally around efforts for early recovery. This is needed to mitigate the negative socio-economic impacts of the pandemic and to the extent possible, enable Tanzania to at least sustain the progress it had made in achieving SDGs.
Tremendous support was received during the drafting to the final stage of this report from Technical Experts of UN Agencies, development partners and the private sector. UNDP expresses its appreciation to experts from World Bank, UNICEF, Un Women, ILO, FAO, WFP and WHO.