(Ecofin Agency) - Analysts at the rating agency Moody’s expect the current covid-19 pandemic to have uneven impacts depending on sectors. Casinos, accommodations, transports and catering are in the front line, experts say.
According to them, these sectors generally depend on trade and the free movement of people, both of which are limited to varying degrees around the world. Automobile manufacturers are also highly exposed because of their dependence on international supply chains, many of which are disrupted, as well as their direct exposure to China.
Although sectors such as food distribution and packaging business are also dependent on international supply chains to a certain extent, Moody’s thinks they would see a stable demand. According to the agency, the sectors of telecommunications and technology services are also expected to show resilience, especially as they reduce the level of physical contact and people spend more time at home collaborating remotely.
For the time being, these good resilience outlook for the telecom sector is not convincing investors, particularly in Africa. In Morocco, Itissalat al Maghrib (Maroc telecom), lost 17.8% on the Casablanca stock exchange at the beginning of March 2020. In Kenya, Safaricom posted a 10% loss over the same period, although it has recovered in the last two days. Airtel Africa has also declined, as has Africa’s market leader by subscribers, MTN group.
More globally, the most worrying coronavirus risk for Africa, alongside the impact on the stock markets, is the loss of growth in the global economy. Growth is forecast at only 0.5% in Europe compared to 1.7% expected at the beginning of the year. The same trend should be seen in China, which is Africa's leading partner.
The African public sector is therefore likely to face a new external shock, while measures to address previous challenges are not yet fully implemented.