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COVID-19 brings once-in-a-century shock to Botswana

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Botswana’s Minister of Finance and Economic Development, Dr. Thapelo Matsheka has presented the southern African country’s 2021-2022 financial budget amounting to 70.61 billion pula amidst uncertainties brought about COVID-19 pandemic.

“COVID-19 has brought a once-in-a-century shock to Botswana, Africa and the entire world,” said Matsheka, adding that the reality is that the speed and extent of the transmission of the COVID-19 shock has been unprecedented and no nation has been spared.

According to Matsheka, the impact of the pandemic on economies around the world has also been devastating with a range of negative impacts, including reduced or even negative economic growth as well as increased rates of unemployment and poverty.

“Botswana has experienced a large negative economic shock as a result of the pandemic. Our economy contracted by nearly one quarter in the period March to June 2020 and over the year as a whole will experience a deep recession,” he said.

Botswana’s tourism and mining sectors — the southern African country’s economic mainstay in terms of their respective contribution to the country’s gross domestic product, were severely affected due to travel restrictions imposed by countries to curb the spread of the pandemic.

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In response, Botswana launched a comprehensive Economic Recovery and Transformation Plan to fast track recovery and transformation, as well as to enhance medium to long term economic resilience. Enditem

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