Coronavirus outbreak triggers pessimism in global economy: Minister

Jakarta Finance Minister Sri Mulyani Indrawati pointed to pessimism being brought on in the economy worldwide, especially in China, by the coronavirus outbreak that has spread globally.

"In 2020, optimism was rife (on the global economic recovery), but within a week, matters took a turn for the worse. This coronavirus has sparked pessimism that impacted the economy in January," Indrawati stated at the Parliament Complex here on Tuesday.

In fact, the minister highlighted that several parties had seen the potential of economic recovery in 2020 after the slowdown in 2019 due to the US-China trade war as well as the Brexit issue.

"All outlook pictured the recovery in 2020 in terms of growth and trade, as in December 2019, China and the US had entered the first phase of agreement that had sparked a positive response," she pointed out.

However, the optimism has changed to pessimism, as the coronavirus has spread further. "Usually, Chinese New Year has offered a momentum for China to increase its economic growth through domestic factors, domestic consumption," she stated.

The virus outbreak that originated in Wuhan has prevented the country from benefiting from the momentum.

"There is a policy to lock down some cities owing to which the potential to boost its economy from the domestic sector could not be materialized. The holiday was also extended until early February," she stated.

According to Indrawati, the policy has mirrored global uncertainty and unpredicted risk of the outbreak, so all countries have to remain alert.

"The risk is unpredictable and very volatile, so all countries must be on alert," she stated.

Source: Antara News

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