2020 was a challenging year for the millions of people across the globe. The pandemic has impacted the entire economy with many companies and industries experienced significant impacts on revenues. The economic slowdown will further complicate the demand and supply of goods and services.
Statistics and latest analysis from the Penang Institute have stated that Penang’s economy is projected to remain anaemic in 2021 amid rising cases of Covid-19. Even as the vaccination programme is rolled out early in the year, growth will continue to be uneven across sectors. Industries that have seen a quick and full recovery include technology, logistics, medical devices related to infectious diseases prevention, and e-commerce. On the negative end, recovery in the sectors of travel and hospitality, food and beverage, and retail trade is expected to be difficult and protracted.
In short, a combined K- and W-shaped recovery is forecasted for Penang, with a bumpier normalisation to be experienced by tourism-related and retail industries until vaccines are fully distributed locally and globally. However, economic normalisation can be slowed, depending on the following two factors: the ability of the country to drastically reduce infection cases within the partial relaxation of MCO 2.0, and the effectiveness of the government’s vaccination programme. (Penang Economic Outlook 2021: Uneven Growth Expected across Sectors).
The Penang Future Forward Summit aims to provide the ideas, insights and connections to formulate successful strategies, capitalize on technological change and shape a more resilient, sustainable and competitive future for the state.