Post-lockdown world will be ‘a new, different reality’ – expert

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Post-lockdown world will be ‘a new, different reality’ – expert


Futurist Parag Khanna talks about the standstill in migration amid the coronavirus pandemic and how our world might change

MANILA, Philippines – The world is experiencing a standstill in migration because of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to futurist Parag Khanna, founder and managing partner of FutureMap, a data-driven strategic advisory firm. 

“When can you point to a period, an exact moment in history, where there is exactly zero migration?” he said in a Rappler Talk interview on Wednesday, April 8. “Net zero migration. Everyone is going home.”

For instance, the Philippine government has already repatriated over 4,600 Filipinos working abroad as of April 5.

The world is undergoing a “reset,” Khanna said, because of countries imposing simultaneous lockdowns.

“We’re gonna have this total reset moment and see what the next phase of globalization is going to look like. What trade patterns, what migration patterns, what geopolitical alignments, and so forth.”

Khanna spoke to Rappler CEO Maria Ressa about the coronavirus pandemic’s impact on globalization and the possible geopolitical trends and repercussions that could arise from it. 

When the pandemic passes and lockdowns are lifted, Khanna said during the interview, what’s normal will be a lot different.

“It feels like it’s amazing how simultaneously synchronized activity is right now across governments and states, but it also feels like this suspension of reality. And when we start again, it will be a new and different reality,” he said.

As of April 2, more than 3.9 billion people, or half of the world’s population, are under compulsory or recommended confinement, curfews, and quarantines due to the coronavirus pandemic. These measures are in place in more than 90 countries and territories, with 49 of those subject to obligatory confinement at home.

In the Philippines, the government placed Luzon under a monthlong lockdown on March 17. It was supposed to be lifted on April 12, but the lockdown was later extended to April 30. Many local government units outside Luzon have also declared their own lockdowns or community quarantines. 

As of Thursday, April 9, the Philippines has 4,076 cases of novel coronavirus cases, with 203 deaths, and 124 recoveries.

Meanwhile, over 1.5 million cases of the novel coronavirus have been registered worldwide. – with reports from Agence France-Presse/

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