Is COVID-19 reshaping the trading business?

This past year certainly hasn’t been easy. It started off as a harmless, isolated case, and then it quickly became something the entire world wasn’t prepared for. Nor could we prepare for it, after all. COVID-19 cases were rising in number and we had to quickly find solutions to the problems that arose. From beating an illness no one knew much about, to figuring out how to function in a lockdown, we have learned how to adapt and overcome sudden changes. Many people began working from home in order to help flatten the curve, but also many lost their jobs. There are many businesses that simply couldn’t transfer to a WFH schedule. One of them is the trading business. While the entire world stopped to a halt, we’ll see if COVID-19 is reshaping the trading business as well.

Is COVID-19 reshaping the trade business? Let’s find out.

In any business, you will learn how to adapt to the times year by year. Nothing stays the same, and by following the world trends, you change the way your business is operating. However, when something drastic happens that influences the entire world, everyone has to figure out how to stay afloat. In the trading business, people have seen that borders can open and close suddenly and that you cannot plan ahead much. Everything stopped for a while, so even regular occurrences such as cargo shipping to Saudi Arabia were unable to happen. When a business stops, the company and its employees take a hit. Many have had to let go a large number of employees or reduce their hours. All in all, not much good has this year brought us. Well, except for the change in our perspective. 

stock market
Trade business is one of the businesses that were hit the hardest by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Every business owner knows they need to be quick to adapt to any situation that arises. Moreover, they need to have a backup plan in case the business stops or slows down. The company doesn’t need to suffer if you’ve got a plan B in place. So, even if COVID-19 reshaping the trading business continues, we will learn how to go along with it. This includes even the moving industry, and with it our company, Easy Move Kuwait. In order for the trade to continue, we might need to make a few changes and expect the unexpected. So, let’s take a look at what the experts are predicting the trade business will look like in the post-COVID world.

All experts agree on one thing

That is, it is not looking good. In the spring of 2020, global economics took a big hit. The pandemic started in Asia, and then very quickly spread to other continents as well. Meaning, the entire world was not battling the same enemy. The impacts on international trade, investment, shipping, and other businesses were felt immediately. The more COVID-19 cases there were, the lower the economy plunged. Experts believe the consequences of this effect will be felt far longer than the ones after the 2008 crisis did. They predict that the developing countries will have negative growth and that the developed ones will have a much deeper fall in output than they did 12 years ago. But, there is one business that continued to have a rising line.

lab tech
The trade of medical supplies was going strong during the past year.

The trade of medical supplies related to COVID-19 was the one business that thrived in the past year. Naturally, this industry rushed to get the supplies people needed all over the world. So, for example, shipping to Qatar still carried on, only different items were sent out. In more than a few countries there was a mask shortage, everyone bought absurd amounts of disinfectants and tried to protect themselves at all costs. Fortunately, these hectic times only lasted for a few months, and slowly things were stabilized, thanks to the trade of medical supplies between countries. But, while this trade developed, others plunged immensely.

COVID-19 is reshaping the trading business – but not in a good way

Some experts believe that the global merchandise trade is expected to fall more than it did over 10 years ago! The statistics that were published showed a downwards pointing line that doesn’t seem it’s going to change direction any time soon. All of this seems pretty logical, doesn’t it?

When the world when into lockdown, borders were closed and no one was able to get in or out. The number of flights was reduced to the minimum, and the only planes that flew were cargo ones. The same goes with ships – there were no cruise ships, but only freight ones. Handling transportation logistics wasn’t easy, but it managed to somehow keep going, even at a slower pace. But even the planes and ships carrying cargo were working on a minimum capacity, and there wasn’t as much demand as there was before. The trade business was definitely very affected by the pandemic, and it will take a long time before it is back on its feet. 

ship in a port
World trade may have hit a rock, but it will find a way to come back up again.

So, what can we do about it in the future?

As we all know, China was the leader in global trade and economics. Moreover, it was the country that was first impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and it was locked down for a very long time. This severely damaged its trade, keeping in mind that its economy was already slowing down before the pandemic started. The virus outbreak slowed down their path to recovery, but it also pointed out flaws in other countries’ systems as well. In these times, we have seen which countries have strong economies and powerful leadership, and which can crumble under pressure. Hopefully, some have learned what areas they need to improve in. Even the shipping business was affected by the coronavirus, and it needed to adapt. In the end, COVID-19 is reshaping the trade business and we have to learn how to adapt to the changes that are incoming.