August 6: A study conducted by Nepal Rastra Bank shows that most of the businesses and industries of Nepal were badly affected by the four-month long lockdown imposed by the government on March 24 to stem the spread of coronavirus.
A survey report on impact of Covid-19 on economy unveiled by the central bank on Wednesday (August 5) states that the businesses houses and industries of Nepal laid off almost one fourth of their employees during the lockdown period. The employers were also held accountable for pay-cuts of 18.2 percent in average, according to the report.
During the lockdown, only four percent of industries and businesses were fully operational while 35 percent remained partially open. According to the report, 61 percent of industries and businesses were completely shut during the lockdown period. Sectors ranging from education and hotel industry to real estate business and public transportation remained closed during lockdown.
Agriculture, communication and health sectors remained fully operational during the lockdown while mining activities, production of food, distribution of cooking gas, drinking water and other related industries remained partially opened.
The central bank had conducted the survey from June 8 to 24 in 52 districts involving 674 industries and businesses included in the National Economic Census except the banking and insurance sectors.
The report states that an average of 22.5 percent of workers were laid off during the lockdown. Seventy percent of those workers were working on contract basis. Gas industries, wholesale and retail businesses, construction companies, and productive sector as well as media were responsible for most of the layoffs, the report states.
Meanwhile, hotels and restaurants were the ones responsible for maximum pay-cuts. The hotel and hospitality industry had reduced the salary of their staffers by 36.4 percent followed by transportation sector (31.2 percent) and education sector (21.1 percent).