In the latest of our macro webinar series, Charu Chanana, Lead Economist Asia, discusses India’s COVID Crisis
Bottom line: Most countries have tried to avoid prolonged and widespread lockdowns this year, resorting instead to targeted restrictions, which suggests that economic drag will be smaller than 2020. But the slow pace of vaccinations threatens to undermine the success of last year in containing the virus. We believe that none of the Asian economies will achieve herd immunity this year. The recurring COVID infections in most Asian economies have increased the downside risks to our 2021 GDP growth forecasts, especially for the EMs. Scarring effects are also likely to be more significant if the pandemic is delayed, which may mean downgrades to potential growth. We continue to watch for that.