Badly hit E-commerce sector needs patronage
The e-commerce sector of our country has started feeling the brunt of COVID-19, triggering panic amid the global pandemic. According to a report of this newspaper yesterday, online orders have declined drastically since the first identification of Coronavirus cases in the country. E-commerce sites selling daily essentials and health products, such as masks and sanitizers are doing roaring business. But fashion, IT services, cosmetics, and sellers of other imported products have taken a hit.
The outbreak of Coronavirus is an unprecedented human tragedy, affecting millions of people throughout the globe. Apart from deaths of thousands of people, it is leaving a catastrophic impact on the world economy including Bangladesh. Following the government's directives of an unofficial lockdown there is no movement of public transport now. Life has virtually come to a standstill. As delivery system is not working, e-commerce too is almost off at present. It is difficult to say how this precarious situation will continue.
When people belonging to various segments of life are confined to their homes to escape the infection of Coronavirus, how the wheels of economy will run? A grim uncertainty looms large in the business sector of the country. Before the outbreak of Coronavirus the trade and business of the country were going well. GDP growth was satisfactory. Now a dismal scenario will confront the sector unless some pragmatic measures are taken.
The outbreak of Coronavirus has created a stalemate stemming from travel bans and social distancing. The affected sectors include RMG, tourism, hospitality and aviation. The government has already announced some measures to overcome the situation. More such measures should be taken. In fact, every sector of the country is bearing the brunt of COVID-19. It is a sheer tragedy that millions of people who eke out a living by slogging on daily basis are on the brink of starvation. The fear of death due to Coronavirus does not worry many of them.
E-commerce companies need due patronage to tide over the crisis. Interest-free loans, special incentives, exemption from surcharge on existing loans and postponement of loan instalments are the demands of the persons engaged in this sector. The relevant authorities may take their demands into consideration.