Suppose the economy in which you go about your business is run by export revenue and remittances from migrant workers. Suppose further that one can reasonably suppose that remittance revenue will soon dip. In that circumstance, export revenue matters, doubly.
Consider then the long run impact of the Icelandic volcano mess on the import and export market in Europe and Asia. Flights to and from Continental Europe have been erratic, at best, even admitting the cataclysmic impact on the European imports and exports for that week when Europe was nothing but a shuttered island. Consider, more specifically that even if the macro-level economy is elastic to that terrible disruption, the micro-level impact of grounded planes, contracts unfulfilled, tenders unsigned was surely life-changing for the worse for many tradesmen, small business owners and service providers.
But Bangladesh’s economy isn’t elastic to that kind of shock. Its economy is buoyed by the garment’s export market and for those few days– even now given the disruptions in Ireland and so on– the Bangladeshi export market had been crippled, flung back into a circumstance where it was and remains hostage to nature’s whims. This is not unfamiliar territory for Bangladeshi’s. But since 1947 seldom have Bangladesh’s problems so obviously and unremittingly emanated from European skies.
To get a flavor of the discombobulation on the streets in Dhaka, please watch the Al Jazeera English piece below.
There are other victims of this crisis, of course. As the garments trade has come a halt, so has food export and import. Asian and African countries are hurting. Read more about the effect of the volcanic ash-cloud on Kenya’s declining food trade at the excellent blog on Global Food Security,