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COVID-19 And Business in Ghana, Africa

The novel coronavirus, COVID-19, took the world by surprise and shattered a lot dreams and forecasts(investments and developments). No country, even those with sophisticated technologies were prepared for the next pandemic after MERS-SARS, COVID-19. It practically posed a scare which hindered routine activities such going to work, school, religious gatherings, gym, parties, and even doctor's appointments.

Many thought this pandemic would not reach the shores of Africa, with some people defending this 'philosophy' with the climate differences between most African states and the European and Asian states, particularly China, Spain and Italy. Unfortunately, just as fashion trends find ways of reaching Africa, COVID-19 broke the portals overwhelmingly. This forced most countries including Ghana to have an emergency lockdown.

Lockdown in Ghana and other parts of Africa started with schools and later affected other regular gatherings. Businesses were closed, and that was a big blow to the locals. The market to the average Ghanaian or African was a physical, concrete setting where exchange of goods and services took place. Apparently, the pandemic and its associated lockdown remedy spelt out clearly that face-to-face business dealings will have to be put on hold. With markets and offices closed, it meant that other peripheral businesses including those in the informal sector were affected.

In the heat of all these negativity, modern technologies helped in bridging the gap between buyers and sellers, and business operations. Most schools had to adapt to the change and go online. Online tuition, at all levels, became the order of the day since no physical contacts were to be made to avoid the pandemic spread of the novel coronavirus. Businesses were not adamant either. The use of modern computer and mobile phone applications (Apps) made lives easier in one way or the other for employers and employees. Apps such as Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Google Tools, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram among others helped people to stay connected and got jobs done.

Furthermore, the provision of delivery services has been embraced by a lot of people. Shops and restaurants have adopted delivery services which have provided jobs for the youth in particular. Most corporate organizations have adopted the the work-from-home policy, and so far it is working perfectly. This policy has eased the pressure on employees, supervisors and employees to go through a stressful traffic to get the workplace. This invariably has decreased the traffic situations in major cities in Ghana and other parts of Africa. In a nutshell, all that are needed are reliable electronic devices and mobile data for work to be done.

The adoption of the work-from-home policy which was initiated by giant multinational companies such as Google, Facebook, Microsoft, Nestle, MTN etc, has been an eye-opener for Africa. Thus, the African mindset had always been that for a transaction to be done, there should be a face-to-face negotiation for a consensus to be reached, but COVID-19 has corrected this anomaly since offices are closed but working efficiently with video calls and meetings held online and deals being negotiated.

In the wake of adapting to new demands in this pandemic era, a lot of criminals have taken advantage of the masses on virtual business platforms such as Jiji, Tonaton etc in Ghana to perpetuate cyber crimes. Scammers have come up with new ways of duping people and making away with their hard earned cash. Most Mobile Money operators and subscribers have fallen prey to these fraudsters who call them as though they are service providers from telecommunication networks. This has made security agencies and anti-fraud units of various companies become alert and are working assiduously to prevent future occurrences.

Content created and supplied by: GideonCofie-Dey (via Opera News )

Africa China Ghana


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