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Deloitte releases publication on Economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on East African economies

Nairobi, Kenya, 14 July 2021 – Deloitte has released the Economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on East African economies (Kenya, Ethiopia, Tanzania, Uganda, and Rwanda) Volume 2 publication themed ‘Navigating New Realities’. This publication delves deeper from the macro-economic insights and government mitigation measures highlighted in our Volume 1 publication released in May 2020.

Commenting on the East Africa macro-economic environment, Deloitte East Africa Financial Advisory Leader Gladys Makumi noted, “We expect the East African economic activity to pick up in 2021 with a 3% growth in comparison to 0.9% in 2020. This will be mainly driven by private consumption and domestic demand. However, the recurrence of lockdowns, slow vaccine roll-out across the region, restriction in movements, and budgetary pressures in some of the major economies will have a negative impact.”

The COVID-19 pandemic has taken more than 4 million human lives and seen economic stimulus packages across global economies surpass USD 13 trillion, four times more than the response to the 2008 - 2009 financial crisis. Considered the black swan of 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic ravaged through economies both globally and at an East Africa level, with far reaching effects witnessed across several sectors. The pandemic is now considered part of the new normal, though navigating through this new reality is expected to be bumpy and slow with full recovery and rebound in 2021 still largely uncertain.

Tewodros Sisay, Deloitte East Africa Financial Advisory Associate Director noted, “This past year has truly shown that we are in a new reality. Despite the pandemic taking more than 150 thousand lives in Africa and the continent's economy contracting by 2.1%, countries have largely remained resilient amidst the pandemic and continue to chatter a new path towards recovery as we start Q3 of 2021. Recovery will be driven by tourism, agriculture, and manufacturing sectors. Subsequently, it will also be driven by an uptick in investment activity in the private sector with long-term effects of foreign direct investment (FDI) diversification expected to take effect, notwithstanding the 9.6% reduction in FDI inflows into the East African region in 2020.”

This year’s publication provides high level insights into the continued impact of COVID-19 in East Africa and dives deeper into sectoral analysis. We have also incorporated feedback from our clients and readers and have included Rwanda in this year’s publication. The publication highlights the COVID-19 sector heat maps across the East Africa countries as well as provides an outlook of the expected performance in 2021.

Please note that we have used available data through 30 June 2021 for the purposes of our analysis in this publication.

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