Namibia Logistics Association

2020/09 Coronavirus and the World Economy

Coronavirus and the World Economy

The coronavirus has arrived in the most remote place of the World and 212 countries and territories are affected. Namibia has now 16 cases and South Africa 7 808. China reported no new deaths for the week. Namibia emerged with stage 2 out of the lockdown on 5 May as expected. The latest cases and deaths are the following:

Table 1: Coronavirus cases – 27 January – 7 May

Region/CountryCases27 JanCases27 FebCases26 MarCases23 AprCases30 AprCases7 May
China4 58178 49981 28582 79882 86282 885
Europe556246 3271 090 8731 219 2781 299 546
Africa  1 00524 89436 70347 267
North America 7489 478889 2821 116 1691 326 679
Rest of the World2 49553 322551 178766 5721 066 574
Total4 58182 183471 4172 639 0253 221 5843 822 951


From the middle of March the epicentre of the coronavirus has shifted from China to Europe and then to the US. Currently 34.7% of all reported cases are in North America and 54% of the total deaths are reported in Europe.  The US reported 1 263 183 cases and 74 807 deaths. Only 1.2% of the reported cases are on the African continent; however one should keep in mind that testing is not done as expected. 

Table 2: Coronavirus deaths – 27 January – 7 May

Region/CountryDeaths27 JanDeaths27 FebDeaths26 MarDeaths23 AprDeaths/30 Apr Deaths/7 May
China1062 7473 2874 6324 6334 633
Europe1414 143110 387131 603143 127
Africa  281 2371 5571 997
North America[1] 1 33449 65564 66579 039
Rest of the World432 50318 35225 80536 288
Total1062 80421 295184 263228 263265 084


[1] North America is Canada and the US

If the current trend continues the total number of deaths will be around 290 000 in a weeks’ time. The USA, Spain, Italy, France and the UK have today 70.3% of the number of deaths reported in the whole World. 

Africa was out of limelight in the beginning and Egypt reported the first cases. Slowly the coronavirus pandemic is reaching the African continent and all countries reported 47 267 cases and 1 997 deaths. How is the virus spreading in the SADC region? There are only 10 088 cases reported in the SADC region and 230 deaths.

Table 3: Coronavirus cases and deaths in the SADC region – 2 – 7 May 2020

SADC countryCases2 AprCases23 AprCases30 AprCases7 MayDeaths2 AprDeaths23 AprDeaths30 AprDeaths7 May
South Africa1 3533 6355 3507 808565103153
Total1 7914 9997 20010 0882378173230


Graph one below illustrate that the peak has been reached and we are in a declining trend. We will not reach zero cases soon, but we have to manage the risks strictly. 

Graph 1: Weekly change of the World’s coronavirus cases and deaths

The graph above depicts the weekly change since beginning of February 2020 in the whole World of reported cases and deaths. There is light at the end of the tunnel and since 2 April a six week decline in the growth of cases and deaths occurred.

Graph 2: COVID 19 cases and deaths in Africa and the rest of the world

Source: Compiled from Worldometers data

From the data which is available one can see that a third wave is not on the way as the WHO predicted three weeks ago. 

The World economy will move into a severe recession as the MSCI World Index (below) is signalling. The MSCI World Index consists of the stock exchange performance of 28 countries. 

Graph 3: MSCI World Index

   Source: MSCI Index

The MSCI index was at 2401 on 22 February 2020 and closed on Tuesday at 1998, a fall of 16.8%. 

Table 4: Selected international commodity prices

Winners for Namibia  
Energy: Brent oil-9.44%-57.74%

 Source: Trading economics. 7 May 2020 

The commodity prices relevant to Namibia reached a turning point four weeks ago and with the weakening exchange rate one can probably see an increase in exports from May onwards.

The N$ is currently trading 18.8 to the US Dollar and 20.2 to the Euro. 

Compiled by: Rainer Ritter           

7 May 2020