Accountancy expertssay economic confidence in Q1 has capitulated as the Pakistani economystruggles to get to grips with the fallout from the Coronavirus.
Anational survey of senior accountancy practitioners,who reflect the outlook of a large number of businesses they advise, found that confidence has fallen bymore than 5% to -28, a record low for Q1 registered in the 11-year history of the research.
The reportGlobal Economic ConditionsSurvey (GECS),jointly published byACCA (Association of Chartered Certified Accountants)and IMA® (Institute of ManagementAccountants) reveals:
- Global confidence fell to its lowest level on record with big falls in all regions
- The global orders index, which tends to be less volatile than confidence, also fell sharply
- Pakistan employment and investment tumble to record lows
- Pakistan set to suffer a sharp economic contraction in coming months
Michael Taylor, chief economist at ACCA, revealed there wasrelatively little divergence in confidence between regions owing to the global nature of the coronavirus economic shock.
He said: ‘Pakistaneconomic sentiment is in line with the rest of the world. Confidence fell everywhere and, in most cases, sharply and to the lowest since the survey began in 2009.
‘South Asia, Pakistan in particular, did not show a collapse in confidence in early March. Pakistan was suffering from weak growth prior to the pandemic and will quickly fall into economic contraction.
‘While this survey looks at the economic impact, it is important to remember there is a human cost both now and in the long-term on well being, skills and the risk of redundancy.’
Looking ahead, Michael Taylor concludes: ‘The economic damage incoming months will be huge.But if appropriate policy action is taken, then conditions for recovery will be in place when the COVID-19 health crisis is substantially over.’