At the time of writing, no one yet knows what impact this Covid-19 pandemic will have. All governments have declared war on Covid-19, but isn't it rather a battle, to be followed by economic and financial ones?
We all know the world we left behind when we entered our confinement, but it is still difficult to imagine the world afterwards. The health crisis will be followed by the economic crisis, surely accompanied by significant societal changes.
At a time when ecological awareness and CSR policies in companies are emerging in the world, the underlying aim of this movement is to give more meaning to individual, but also to collective action. To be more respectful of our impact on the environment, but also on the quality of life of our employees.
When it is time to take stock and project ourselves, the customer and employee experience will surely remain the master rule, but their codes will probably be different from those that currently serve as our guidelines. Inevitably, they will expect more, especially in terms of safety and hygiene. The perception of value for leisure stays and the rationalization of business stays will permanently change the game.
Many economic scenarios are flourishing, after the opening of the monetary Pandora's box, with some hoping for inflation and others fearing stagflation (high unemployment and sharp price rises). Whatever the scenario, wished or required, our sector will not emerge unscathed from this major, unprecedented and global health crisis.
At a time when the globalized economy is going dormant, taking national economies down with it, when everyone is concerned about landing the plane with as little damage as possible, each nation must first work on individual recovery plans needed to restart their respective economies. This will help restart world trade in a second phase.
The return to a globalized economy, as we have seen in recent decades, if it returns, will take longer than initially imagined. The reopening of borders and freedom of movement will only be fully achieved once all outbreaks of the epidemic have been brought under control. To date, it is impossible to make an initial assessment of the end of this pandemic, nor of the scale it will reach in the world. In times of crisis, it is necessary to be able to decide in the fog, i.e. with little information and certainty. Now is the time to be creative!
Some people talk about the reindustrialization of production tools and know-how, which has a 10 years trajectory. One job out of ten worldwide, is in the tourism industry. The contribution to GDP is massive, whether in mature and developed economies or in countries essentially focused on leisure tourism. The priority of recovery plans must focus on restarting domestic consumption through services for developed countries. Regarding emerging economies, competitive devaluation will be a serious weapon used to gain outbound tourism.
Each crisis is specific, they have different triggers, and each has its own context. After the 90’s crisis, the arrival of new concepts in Europe gave the sector a new impetus. It will be necessary to think again about what tomorrow's concepts will be, adapted to the situation after COVID-19.
At a time when coordination and solidarity between the major economic players are struggling to take shape, we will have to rely first and foremost on our intrinsic ability to get our economy off the ground with our know-how, our employees, our demand and a form of regained economic sovereignty that will serve as a basis and balance for the returns from more global exchanges. Each of us must be ready to live up to this rendezvous with history and must take our share of responsibility in building tomorrow's world.
Beyond the economic stakes, our sector is at the heart of human values of openness towards others rather than the natural reflex of closing down in the face of danger.
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