New Zealand Inc Reaps Benefit of Lockdown Response
When Covid-19 struck New Zealand, Jacinda Ardern’s government quickly closed the nation’s borders and imposed one of the world’s strictest lockdowns in a bid to eliminate the spread of the virus. Jamie Smyth, a journalist for the Financial Times, reports on how that lockdown has affected business.
The decision in late March plunged businesses into crisis, with many forced to implement radical strategic changes to survive. Air New Zealand was an early casualty, requiring a $900m bailout from Wellington, Smyth writes.
But with most restrictions now removed and the virus apparently under control, business confidence is coming back. Many corporate leaders – in industries from tourism to agriculture – hope that Wellington’s decision to prioritise health over keeping its economy open will prove fruitful in the long term.
A survey of 700 global business leaders by Bloomberg in October ranked New Zealand as the nation that has best handled the pandemic and the market they would be most confident investing in.
Original article by Jamie Smyth, Financial Times, November 7, 2020.
Photo by Patrick Pellegrini.