Decisive Government action has made Saudi Arabia more resilient to bounce back from COVID-19 pandemic

date

07-Apr-2020

Riyadh-Saudi Arabia: 7 April, 2020 - Decisive action, solid economic foundations and a multi-billion-dollar stimulus package has made Saudi Arabia better equipped than other countries in the region to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic, according to new research in the Kingdom.

A new survey conducted in the country by global communications agency APCO Worldwide has shown that the clear majority – 81 percent - is confident that Saudi Arabia will recover more quickly than other countries in the region.

The research among 500 Saudi nationals showed there was a high level of confidence in the strong and decisive action taken by the government in closing malls, introducing curfews to limit gatherings and announcing a US$34.4 billion stimulus package to support the national economy.

Respondents also indicated that the economic changes and reform within the Kingdom in recent years has made it better placed and far more resilient to bounce back quicker than other countries in the region from the widespread impact of the pandemic, with 76% believing this to be the case.

Spending patterns have also held up strongly – despite the closure of malls and retail outlets – with 39% spending more with the bulk of that on essentials like food while 40% were purchasing less than before. When asked about post crisis purchasing patterns, respondents were more cautious, with 41% indicating they would wait before returning to past buying behavior while 40% said they would immediately purchase as they have in the past.

The research also showed that Saudi citizens believe their nation has an important

important role to play in bringing the major economies together to coordinate economic recovery as the Chair and host of the G20 during this crisis.

And 58% of people want Saudi to help regional neighbors in post coronavirus reconstruction and in rebuilding their economies – including those that are not traditional allies and countries that have fewer resources than the Kingdom and its allies.

It was clear from the survey as well that many believe that large Saudi cities should invest in ensuring they are as well prepared as possible to deal with future pandemics with 48% urging the government to do so compared to 28% that believe the virus is a reason to slow down growth and urban expansion.

 

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