Brunei to see over USD28m impact from virus: ADB

Azlan Othman

The Asia Development Bank (ADB) said Brunei Darussalam will see losses amounting to over USD28 million this year due to the economic impact of the COVID-19 outbreak.

The Bank’s initial economic analysis and associated data files, The Economic Impact of the COVID-19 Outbreak on Developing Asia, was published on March 6.

It provided estimates of the impact on Asian countries – on individual economies and sectors in the region – through numerous channels, including sharp declines in domestic demand, lower tourism and business travel, trade and production linkages, supply disruptions, and health effects.

According to the report, the Sultanate is affected in the areas of business travel, hospitality, food and beverage, transport and supply.

The Bank estimated that the outbreak could cause a decline in tourism revenue for Brunei Darussalam by as much as USD11.7 million or 0.086 per cent of its GDP in the best case scenario, USD15.3 million or 0.113 per cent of GDP in the moderate case scenario or US26.1 million or 0.192 per cent in the worst case scenario.

ADB forecast economic losses in all Southeast Asian countries: Brunei at USD28 million or 0.21 per cent of its gross domestic product (GDP), Cambodia at USD390 million or 1.6 per cent of GDP, Indonesia at USD2,263 million or 0.22 per cent of its GDP, Lao PDR at USD39.27 million or 0.22 per cent of its GDP, Malaysia at USD830 million or 0.23 per cent of its GDP, the Philippines at USD989 million or 0.3 per cent of its GDP, Singapore at USD1,047 million or 0.57 per cent of its GDP, Thailand at USD5,601 million or 1.11 per cent of its GDP, and Vietnam at USD1,012 million or 0.41 per cent of its GDP. The Bank said the global impact of the virus ranges between USD77 billion and USD347 billion, with China accounting for two-thirds of the losses.

It also said the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak is affecting China and other developing Asian economies through sharp declines in domestic demand, lower tourism and business travel, reduced trade and production linkages, supply disruptions and health effects.

Most developing Asian eco-nomies are already responding to the outbreak in various ways, noted ADB, with many governments having mobilised inter-agency task forces and other coordinating mechanisms to ensure a harmonised response.

ADB will publish updated estimates of the economic impact of the pandemic in its Asian Development Outlook 2020 to be released on April 1.