The coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19) has touched people from all walks of life. Across Thailand, children have been home from school, employees have been working from home, and business owners have struggled to remain viable.
All of us have been learning to conduct our daily lives. The less fortunate have lost their jobs or incomes and must seek alternative livelihoods.
And this poses the question, how can Thailand limit the impact on its economy by expanding safety nets for the vulnerable and rethinking social protection?
COVID-19 will worsen an already challenging situation for households facing droughts, stagnant wage growth, and rising poverty. Poverty rates had risen already in 2016 and 2018, according to the World Bank’s report, Taking the Pulse of Poverty and Inequality in Thailand report. Now, as economic activity declines, job and income loss will likely worsen household welfare.
Declining incomes pose a serious challenge for poverty reduction
Labor market income represents a significant share of households’ income, and declines will reduce their…