Though many domestic restrictions have now been lifted, the COVID-19 pandemic is still having a significant impact on the economy of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). Current low levels of demand for key exports such as cobalt are not set to recover until 2021 at the earliest, meaning there is little chance of swift economic recovery, and Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is expected to this year. As the situation moves from short-term crisis to prolonged economic downturn, businesses in the DRC need support to weather adverse commercial conditions while operating safely (i.e. in line with social distancing advice).
This study aims to track how COVID-19 is impacting companies across the country. Through data and analysis—complemented by direct input from business leaders—this study provides insight into how the government and other stakeholders can best support businesses at this time.
Currently, seven out of ten businesses in the DRC are experiencing significant delays or disruptions in their supply chains, and 70% have seen a large fall in revenue compared to this period last year. As a result, almost one third of business leaders reported having to lay-off or furlough staff. Only 2% of respondents felt their business did not need government support to help them weather these economic headwinds but currently only 1% are actually receiving any.
This project is undertaken jointly by ELAN RDC and the Fédération des Entreprises du Congo (FEC). The survey programme will be run over the next 20 weeks - speaking to ~200 businesses on a regular basis to understand their evolving challenges and what support they require.
Results from the latest iteration of the survey, completed between 24th August and 15th September are below. Time series data from all iterations so far is available to download above. The team has also comprised a briefing on the support available and recommended additional actions available to view above.
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