The coronavirus pandemic could cost the global economy $4.1 trillion as it ravages United States, Europe, and other major economies, the Asian Development Bank warned on Friday.
The estimated impact is equivalent to nearly five percent of worldwide output based on a range of scenarios, but the lender said losses from ‘the worst pandemic in a century‘ could be higher.
Asian Development Bank (ADB) said: “The estimated impact could be an underestimate, as additional channels such as…possible social and financial crises, and long-term effects on health care and education are excluded from the analysis.”
Officially reported COVID-19 cases worldwide topped the one million mark on Friday, with more than fifty thousand dead, while there are warnings the numbers will continue to balloon as the disease rapidly spreads.
With billions of people in lockdown and economies at a standstill, the ADB said Asia is forecast to grow 2.2 percent this year, its slowest pace since a 1.7 percent expansion during the Asian financial crisis in 1998.
“No one can say how widely the COVID-19 pandemic may spread, and containment may take longer than currently projected,” ADB chief economist Yasuyuki Sawada said. “The possibility of severe financial turmoil and financial crises cannot be discounted,” he added.