COVID-19 to impact 2020 ad rev estimates: FICCI-EY report

OECD reduced its growth forecast for India by 1.1 per cent for 2020.

MUMBAI: The rapid spread of COVID-19 has fractured the whole world, particularly hitting India’s economy, which could have a drastic impact on the predicted advertising revenues for 2020, says FICCI and EY India’s media and entertainment report 2020.

According to the report, “the coronavirus’ impact on various segments of M&E could include postponement or cancellation of events, impact on theatrical revenues due to loss of weekends, stoppage of print production or circulation in impacted areas, newsprint import blockage, stoppage or delay of content production and post-production, etc.”

Already, a majority of sporting events at both international and local levels have been postponed or cancelled, including the first-ever postponement of 2020’s Tokyo Olympics. Even tech seminars and auto events are being scrapped one after another to curb the spread of the virus. FICCI’s own international convention – FICCI Frames – had also been postponed. The event was scheduled to take place between 18-20 March.

The report estimated that the pandemic will cause disruption across the sector in the world, reducing the global economy by 0.5 per cent in 2020. “Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) reduced its growth forecast for India by 1.1 per cent for 2020, despite it being the fastest-growing major economy in the world,” says the report. The country’s growth was expected to be around five per cent, which is higher than the global average of around 2.5 per cent. India’s expected growth rate is a little higher than that of China.

Reaffirming a positive stance for India in the future, the report expects that despite a growth slowdown in 2019 and 2020, India is expected to regain its position as a global growth leader. As a glimmer of hope, the report mentions that the positive angle is the increased time that people will spend with media in their homes. This is likely to boost media consumption and sampling.

Giving a fresh statement on the current economic situation of the world, International Monetary Fund’s chief Kristalina Georgieva in her online press briefing said: “It is now clear that we have entered a recession as bad or worse than in 2009.” Her statement came on the back of unstoppable cases of coronavirus that has created a financial stir across the globe.

Projecting a recovery in 2021, Georgieva adds: “There may be a sizeable rebound, but only if we succeed with containing the virus everywhere and prevent liquidity problems from becoming a solvency issue. A sudden stop of the world economy could create a wave of bankruptcies and layoffs.”

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