Global trade has rebounded strongly, sustaining economies around the world; ‘Digital globalisation’ raced ahead as people flows plummeted; Country ranking led by The Netherlands, Singapore, Belgium, the United Arab Emirates and Ireland; Four Sub-Saharan Africa countries among top 10 countries with the largest gains in connectedness.
Today, DHL and the NYU Stern School of Business released the DHL Global Connectedness Index 2020 (GCI).
The report, now in its seventh edition, is the first comprehensive assessment of globalization during the spreading COVID-19 pandemic.
It tracks international flows of trade, capital, information and people across 169 countries and territories. After holding steady in 2019, current forecasts imply that the index will fall significantly in 2020 due to the distancing effects of COVID-19 on societies, such as closed borders, travel bans and grounded passenger airlines.
Nonetheless the pandemic is unlikely to send the world’s overall level of connectedness below where it stood during the 2008 – 09 global financial crisis.
Trade and capital flows have already started to recover and international data flows surged during the spreading pandemic as in-person contact migrated online, boosting international internet traffic, phone calls and e-commerce.
John Pearson, CEO of DHL Express, commented:
“The current crisis has shown how indispensable international connections are for maintaining the global economy, securing people’s livelihoods and helping companies strengthen their trading levels,
Connected supply chains and logistics networks play an essential role in keeping the world running and stabilizing globalization especially at a time of a crisis that spans our globe.
This reminds us of the need to stay prepared for any challenge. The recent vaccine breakthrough has put a spotlight on the systemic importance of fast and secure medical logistics dependent on a worldwide interconnected network that effectively ensures international distribution.”
While COVID-19 has disrupted business and life around the world, it has not severed the fundamental links that connect nations.
“This report shows that globalization did not collapse in 2020, but that the pandemic did transform – at least temporarily – how countries connect.
It also demonstrates both the dangers of a world where critical linkages break down and the urgent need for more effective cooperation in the face of global challenges,” comments GCI lead author Steven A. Altman, Senior Research Scholar and Director of the DHL Initiative on Globalization at the NYU Stern School of Business.
“Stronger global connectedness could accelerate the world’s recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, as countries that connect more to international flows tend to enjoy faster economic growth.”
The four countries include Sudan, Niger, the United Republic of Tanzania, and the Gambia.