As the world is being devasted by the lethal pandemic of COVID-19, not only the social sector but the financial sectors are affected too. As Ramadan is just days ahead, the Muslim business community is worried about the decline in business.
Ramadan is one of the holiest months for the followers of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH); the month has several blessings. In this sacred month, Muslims fast from dawn to dusk. Not only does the month contain religious significance but financial obligations too. The Muslim business community across the world makes immense financial gains in this sacred month.
However, the looming sword of coronavirus, which is responsible for the lockdown in Pakistan and several countries in the world, is hampering economic activities. Reciprocally, the coming of Ramadan will wreak havoc on the merchants and traders along with ordinary businessmen. Hence, they would not be able to sell their products.
The business community gave an interview to a leading News portal. One of the salesmen said, “What’s worrying are the pay cuts. There are reports that people have seen their salaries reduced by 30 percent to 50 percent in some cases. So even if the lockdown is lifted, customers won’t have a lot to spend.”
He further told the news channel, “We have paid salaries for this month but going forward it can become difficult for us. Even if the lockdown is lifted, I don’t think people will right away rush to restaurants because of the fear of getting infected.”
Ramadan around the world
In this holy month, Muslims across the globe do tremendous economic activities. To illustrate, approximately Muslims in the United Kingdom (UK) alone contribute $250 million to the national Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in Ramadan. Furthermore, in Malaysia, this ratio goes around $4 billion And, in Egypt, $94 million goes to GDP a day.
Most of the income gets generated by the buying and selling of food items. Furthermore, the Eid-ul-Fitr, a holy festival celebrated by Muslims at the end of the holy month, also spurs the growth of income.
Besides, in the month of Ramadan, the followers of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) went to Mecca in order to perform Umrah, so that they could spend their fast closer to Allah. Notwithstanding, this year due to the closure of flights and ban on Hajj and Umrah, Muslims would not be able to perform the sacred task. This will cost immense losses to the Saudi national exchequer.
Similarly, the deadly virus has hindered trade around the globe. The borders, including Chaman and Taftan, remain closed. Owing to these measures the trade deficit has sharply plummeted, causing inflation. Consequently, the Muslim markets across the world would not be able to buy and sell food products in the month of Ramadan. Furthermore, the tourism sector and, which contributes billions to Muslim countries especially in the month of Ramadan, will be stumbled this year.
The holy month of Ramadan will not be the same for the followers of their Abrahamic religion, Islam. Hopefully, the clouds of gloom will shed away before the inception of Eid or mid of Ramadan, which is nearly impossible as a vaccine for the COVID-19 is still not out.
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