COVID-19: Creating a New World Order
No one will disagree from the fact that ‘world will never remain the same’ after the pandemic of COVID-19 ends. Doing the projections at this point of time will not be appropriate, as nobody knows how long it will go. Over 206 countries of the world are fighting a war with an enemy which is just a few nanometers in size. All the nuclear warheads, air defence systems and every other military equipment have just turned into showpieces.
This is a new world, where animals are on the streets and humans are locked inside the houses. Nature is reclaiming her assets back. It is telling humanity, that humans are not the masters but the renters. And there is something else that is controlling this universe.
The disease which started from China’s wet market is now creating havoc worldwide. People who used to support the Chinese model governance are now proponents of making China responsible for this act against humanity. But, what about the globalisation model? A model which the liberal world used to call the end and forever model.
The world that was very much interconnected now poses some of the tough questions to the proponents of globalisation. The world in which everything was possible, geographical distances were never an issue. Globalisation was used as a way to tackle the hardships of the world, ranging from natural calamities to geo-political. But today each country is responding to this menace with just in a de-globalised manner. Where the death toll is increasing at an exponential rate.
Pandemics have always occurred on the planet and will continue to occur in future also. But this time, things are different. It is huge and there are long-lasting direct and indirect impacts. It would not wrong to say, it’s a third world war in itself. Here, each country is supporting each other to tackle a common enemy.
China’s ‘wet market’ which is especially identified as a place where such type of viruses have come out, whether it be the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS), H1N1 or 2019-nCOV. China knew about the seriousness of the issue but didn’t tell this to the world. Even now the actual figures of death numbers in China are not known to anyone. China also silenced the whistleblower Dr Li Wenliang, who alerted the world about this deadly virus. But later he himself died from this disease.
World Health Organisation (WHO) like institutions have come under suspicion after this pandemic. Till January 15, WHO was spreading misinformation about the virus that ‘there are no evidence of human to human transmissions’. How can this be possible? Its director Dr Tedros Adhanom was applauding China for its efforts to fight the virus. His role is under the scanner and must be investigated that despite knowing everything, he didn’t bother to declare the truths about the virus. In the upcoming time, it would be difficult to rely on such institutions, their credibility must be questioned.
Today, the United States is facing the worst consequences of its negligence. President Trump has himself given the estimated figures of final U.S. coronavirus death toll somewhere in the range of 100,000 to 200,000 and according to him, this would be an indication that his administration has done a very good job. This is the same Trump administration which first announced that this virus is not going to impact his country. Now every American is cursing the irresponsible attitude of the government.
Now the conditions are getting critical in many cities of the U.S. where health facilities are crashing. There is short of Personal Protective Equipments (PPE). Doctors and other health care staff are signing their resignation. The U.S may have protected this situation but it was involved in a blame game with China. Where China was calling that virus came from U.S. and U.S. started calling it as ‘Wuhan Virus’. The U.S. was continuously giving advice to other nations on how to fight the virus but itself lost the race.
U.S presidential elections are at the doorstep and upcoming few months will decide the fate of Trump. Whether he will again come to power or lost it due to his mistakes. But one this sure, the world will shift itself from the U.S. centric approach. However, the relevance of the U.S will not be lost completely. There will be a lot of domestic transformation in the U.S. and those will definitely be going to impact the international order as well.
Italy, Spain, France, Germany and the whole of Europe was celebrating the ‘Hug the Chinese’ campaign but they are now regretting their actions. Stability of Europe has got a big setback. Europe can be seen inclined towards China for many years, especially the period when China started its an auspicious project of Border Road Initiative (BRI). In fact, Italy was the first G7 member which officially joined the BRI.
Brexit may have taken over but many of its procedures were still underway. Now Europe will have to think about this, especially Britain. Condition of Britain is also not so good. It didn’t take this pandemic seriously and now it’s PM Boris Johnson is himself fighting with this virus and been admitted to intensive care, today. Britain was so late in declaring this disease as a serious issue. Rather strengthening its health care system it was working on the concept of herd immunity.
Some big issues like global terrorism are now put on hold. However, there are still incidents of terrorism taking place, as the bombing on a Gurudwara in Afghanistan. There are some governments that have started misusing the corona crisis into their favour. Hungry has transformed many changes in its constitution like Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, can rule by decree for an indefinite period. That may be very cruel aspect. But one thing that positive happened is with the environment. As humans are in lockdown, the Air has become purer. Cities, Rivers and Oceans are more cleaners. Pollution has come to normal levels.
The global health challenge is being closely shadowed by an economic challenge in many countries. For countries like India, with the large unorganised labour sector add more to this problem. Challenge of migration is a very high point. India has a weak health system but some stringent measures have been taken place, as the lockdown of 21 days, have helped India to minimize the number of cases when compared to other parts of the world. India needs to create structural reforms and this thing is not limited to India only but the whole of South Asia.
The world economy will also get a hard hit. Major economies of the world will have to see negative growth. Recession will deeper than the event of 2008. There are countries whose major source of income depends on tourism industry have to see a larger impact on their economies. Impacts of this can be seen in Australia at this point of time, as Australia is in phase a recession and now it is openly criticizing China for this. Disruptions in the import and export of critical raw materials and probably rise in price will impact domestic industries adversely.
Countries will have to think about new forms of energy generation. As there will be a huge transformation when it comes to purchasing crude oil. Supplies of the oil have been hindered. And nobody knows, how long it will last. Green energy must be given more focus. Countries need to become self-sufficient. Otherwise, in the times of crisis, this will another battle that they will have to fight.
It is speculated that everything will get a transformation. And it should be, as new transformations bring better and stable systems. And these systems should be to put to test in different conditions so that upcoming dangers could be minimized. But the social structure will not change so much. Even, this will become stronger. This will be more interconnected but this the connection will be digital. No one is self-sufficient. Nature has designed us in such a way that connections will never disappear. In fact, it will become deeper. Sharing of resources will continue to take place. The world will be more proactive. It will be more sensitive. Countries will transform their security structures. Biological safety will be a major issue. Mandatory rules will be enforced. New institutions for mutual collaboration will be formed and present one will be changed structurally
The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Kootneeti Team