The roots of globalization were laid down at the end of WW2 when the allied nations created a ruled-based system for international commerce and finance. This allowed companies, products, science, and technology to move across borders giving way to interconnectedness. However, in the era of the 1990s world entered the era of hyper globalization leading towards a more interconnected world than ever before. And soon globalization became recognized as a compression of time and space. In addition to it, China entered the world economy, and multinational companies expanded into China creating a competitive market across the globe. It is the fruits of globalization that led the developing countries to lift themselves out of poverty, yet in the west consumer enjoyed relatively cheaper products. But the process of globalization has taken two major blows. First was the financial crisis of 2008 when every cross-border activity and international economy shrunk. Globalization started to slow down; workers lost their jobs, in west particularly as factories moved to China. The desire of people to get their jobs back was exploited by populist leaders across the globe, championing nationalist policies, attacking immigration and the existing global economy. In the words of former US President Donald Trump, “the future does not belong to the globalists, it belongs to the patriots”. Free trade faced a setback and protectionism prevailed. Protectionist policies such as the introduction of tariffs and subsidies grew into an international norm. In this climate, globalization suffered the second blow. The United States and China went into a trade war. And now the pandemic is considered to be the third-largest blow to globalization. Hence, the damage to globalization cannot only be accredited to Covid’19, prior to the pandemic globalization was already at the reverse and amid coronavirus, the trend accelerated.
The implications of the crisis going forward are vast. Notwithstanding the recent announcement of vaccines, much is unknown about how the pandemic will spread in the short term and beyond, as well as what will be lasting effects. What is clear, however, is that the time is ripe for change and policy reform. The hope is that decision-makers can rise to the challenge in the medium term to tackle the COVID-19 virus and related challenges that the pandemic has exacerbated it the climate crisis, rising inequality, job insecurity, or international cooperation.
Covid’19 has disrupted the movement of goods, people, and capital across the globe. Pandemic has brought immense damage to globalization and integrated world, it has caused not only human suffering but also has damaged the socio-political fabric of the society. Travel bans, reduced imports and exports, cyber hacking, vaccine controversy, and shortage give a bleak picture of the post-Covid world. The post-pandemic world is likely to be a nationalized and regionalized one or in other words, de-globalization would be a rising trend, for the fact that major economies of the world would work to rescue their own economies rather than working for the welfare of the entire globe. Therefore, in order to rescue the world from the deep scars of de-globalization major economies and international organizations with a common response should work to rescue the third world, as neither economies can survive in isolation nor the world can reverse back to the time of 1940s.