Assessing the long-term impacts of COVID-19 on Pacific Nations

As COVID-19 continues throughout the globe, the impact of the pandemic on economies throughout the world is of immense concern.

Within the Pacific, economies are largely reliant on tourism. With this industry essentially coming to a halt, and no social welfare systems to rely on, people in Pacific countries are facing unprecedented levels of unemployment and poverty.

Several recent articles have highlighted the peril that many Pacific Nations now find themselves and potential ongoing impact that the pandemic will cause, even once it's over.

The Asia Pacific Report website details the findings of a recent report from the International Labour Organisation, indicating that:

"Thousands of jobs in countries like Fiji, Samoa and Tonga are dependent on visitor numbers, which have fallen to zero."

The site also looks at the role that Eco-tourism could play in helping to reset Pacific economies.

The Telegraph
examines the impact of Cyclone Harold, on top of COVID-19 restrictions for Pacific Nations, saying:

"As local communities and aid workers attempt to rebuild from the widespread devastation caused by the cyclone, with very little help from the outside world due to stringent lockdown measures, there is concern that even a handful of Covid-19 cases in these islands would have catastrophic effects."

Radio NZ, have also reported on the potential long-term impacts, in particular for Samoa, which is still reeling from the measles epidemic.

"The pain for Samoa's tourism industry started in November, when a measles outbreak spread across the country, forcing a weeks-long shutdown and state of emergency."

This, coupled with the devastation caused to large parts of the Pacific by Cyclone Harold, means the people of the Pacific need our help now more than ever.

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