COVID-19 is Adversely Affecting Household and Firms, LISGIS HFPM Survey Reveals

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During the period June 6-27, 2020, the Liberia Institute of Statistics and Geo-Information Services (LISGIS) conducted what it calls “COVID-19 High-Frequency Phone Monitoring Survey (HFPMS).”

The twenty-one-day survey on the impacts of the Coronavirus in Liberia according to LISGIS was initiated in an effort to allow the government to make policies and decisions admit the health crises.

The survey consisted of two modules and collected a sample of 806 firms and 1920 households obtained from the sample list of 2016 Households Income and Expenditure Survey.

According to LISGIS, the two Modules of the HFPM Survey provide a breakdown of effects that should trigger vast national decisions.

The survey discovered that large and medium-size businesses halted to continue operation at a reduced capacity that resulted in 63% of large businesses were temporarily closed, 13 % permanently closed and only 4.2 % remained fully operational.

The Report revealed that medium-size enterprises were slammed hard as about 32% of them were temporarily closed during the containment period.

“Firms revenue generation was reduced, supply chain hampered, profit dipped and a sufficient number of workers laid off while some experience wages cut. Large firms had 33% of the employees fired and about 38% had pay reduction,” the HFPMS reveals.

For households, according to LISGIS Deputy Director-General Madam Mariah Gilawenee, the pandemic has created “a precarious livelihood situation and wrecked households’ welfare.” The findings she noted discovered that 75.3% of the households surveyed lost jobs while 67.5% reported a loss of income since the outbreak.

She at the same time pointed out the grave concern over the food situation in the country as 83.8 % of households worried about not having a meal, something Madam Mariah Gilawenee attributed to food insecurity in Liberia.

On the other hand, LISGIS’s recent assessment uncovered that deploying mobile and digital platforms could keep businesses and firms afloat during the COVID-19 period.