The nation may lose $3.5bn to the Ebola epidemic by December this year, if nothing is done to contain the spread of the deadly disease.
The Chief Executive Officer, Financial Derivatives Company Limited, Mr. Bismarck Rewane, who stated this in the firm’s latest report on Friday, said the fear of the disease had affected economic activities significantly.
According to him, the sectors of the economy mostly affected by the fear of the disease are aviation, tourism and hospitality, trade, medical and agriculture.
He added, “Analysing these sectors’ contribution to the Gross Domestic Product shows that Nigeria may lose about $2bn in the first quarter of the outbreak. The chance of the outbreak going into a second quarter is very slim; which could extend the loss to $3.5bn.”
The Boko Haram insurgency had been the headline news in Nigeria until July 25 when it was confirmed that Ebola was imported into the country.
Since then, fear, panic, disbelief and frustration have set in as economic, particularly in Lagos, have gradually slowed down. Global rating agency, Moody’s, has announced that the outbreak of Ebola in Nigeria can lead to serious disruptions in some sectors of the economy with negative financial consequences.
The World Health Organisation has also reported that the Ebola crisis is vastly underestimated as the reported cases and deaths do not reflect the scale of the crisis.
About 1,069 persons have died in the affected countries, out of which three are Nigerians and 198 other persons are currently under quarantine in the country.
Culled from PUNCH