Director General of SESRIC, H.E. Nebil DABUR Addressed the Virtual Meeting of the OIC-COMCEC Central Banks Forum as Lead Speaker
Date: 07 October 2020
Venue: Virtual-SESRIC, Ankara - Türkiye

The virtual meeting of the OIC-COMCEC Central Banks Forum was organized by the Central Bank of the Republic of Turkey on 07 October 2020 under the theme of ‘Recovering Our Economies in Times of Covid-19’. The meeting brought together Governors of the Central Banks and high level policy makers from OIC member countries to discuss the current global and OIC economic outlook and policy measures that were taken to mitigate the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic; and also to evaluate the post-pandemic challenges and opportunities for the OIC member countries.

H.E. Mr. Nebil DABUR, Director General of SESRIC, addressed this august gathering as a lead speaker and shared with the participants the main findings of SESRIC’s recent research study on “Socio-economic Impacts of COVID-19 Pandemic on OIC Member Countries: Prospects and Challenges”. Focusing on the economic impacts of COVID-19, Mr. DABUR stated that the pandemic emerged at a time when the global economy was already in shambles due to lower demand and increasing trade tensions between major global economies. The conjunction of these factors caused a perfect storm drowning the global economy into one of the worst economic recessions in modern history, he added. Referring to the latest estimates of the IMF, Mr. DABUR underlined that the global economy is expected to contract by 4.9% in 2020 and this downward trend may be reversed in 2021 with the hope that either a vaccine is made or herd immunity is achieved to get back to normalization.

Concerning the state of affairs in OIC member countries, Mr. DABUR mentioned that the COVID-19 pandemic constitutes unprecedented challenges and consequences for the OIC economies as the GDP growth is estimated to contract by 2% in 2020. This fall in GDP is particularly alarming given the continuous weakening of the economic performance of the OIC group in the last few years, he emphasized. Referring to alternative scenarios about the impacts of COVID-19, Mr. DABUR stated that total OIC exports could fall between 17% to 33% and drop in FDI inflows could reach as high as 42 billion US$; whereas tourism activities are also expected to contract significantly with 30 to 46 million fewer tourists and about 38 and 57 billion US$ loss in tourism revenue. Moreover, he underlined that this grim state of affairs could result into an additional 6 to 8 million unemployed people in OIC member countries in 2020.

While commenting on the national policy responses to COVID-19, Mr. DABUR mentioned that the majority of OIC member countries have been very quick in enacting appropriate fiscal and monetary policies and introduced stimulus packages to mitigate the negative impacts of the pandemic and restore economic activities. He stressed that the global nature of the pandemic calls for collective national, regional, and international responses. ‘It is during these difficult times that the OIC member countries need to show more solidarity and formulate a joint Islamic action not only to slowdown and eradicate the spread of the pandemic but also to establish effective policies and measures to mitigate its post-effects’ he finally added.

The virtual meeting of the OIC-COMCEC Central Banks Forum was concluded with the adoption of an official Communique.