CBE HOLDS A PANEL DISCUSSION ON THE ECONOMIC AND LEGAL IMPLICATIONS OF THE EPIDEMIC

Qatar University’s College of Business and Economics, in cooperation with the Faculty of Law at Qatar University, organized a tele-discussion seminar entitled: “The economic, financial and legal implications of the Corona pandemic: short and long-term perspectives.”
With the participation of Dr. Ibrahim Al-Ibrahim, Economic Advisor at the Emiri Diwan, Dr. Belkassem Al-Abbas, Senior Expert at the Arab Planning Institute in the State of Kuwait and Dr. Mona Al-Marzouqi, Assistant Dean for Research and Graduate Studies at the Faculty of Law at Qatar University, and the session was moderated by Professor Dr. Saif Al-Suwaidi, Professor of Economics at Qatar University.
The session focused on the repercussions of the global health crisis made by the spread of the Corona pandemic in addition to its economic and legal repercussions at the local and global levels. Prof. Al-Suwaidi started his speech stating, “This pandemic affected people, production, consumption, investment and government decisions, as government have become confused. Do you provide assistance to consumers and individuals? Families, or to investors, producers, and health institutions, so where do the priorities lie?
Discussing about the economic effects and dependencies of this pandemic on the world level, Dr. Al-Ibrahim said, “The repercussions of this pandemic on the global economy will be very harsh – although this picture is not complete yet – but we can say that these effects are distinguished by their severity and comprehensiveness, we are talking about a loss of $ 5.5 trillion in global production, as the pandemic included most of the world’s countries other than their economic progress and economic systems, the impact will be greater on countries that depend on one economic activity, countries that depend on the flow of capital and developing countries that depend on foreign direct investment and For the least developed aid dependent, in addition to oil-exporting countries such as the Gulf Cooperation Council countries due to the collapse in oil prices and thus a significant drop in their oil revenues.”
Speaking of the repercussions on the Arab countries, Dr. Al-Abbas said, “The first and largest of these repercussions is the collapse of revenues in the oil countries, where they will find themselves obliged to withdraw their financial reserves in order to face this crisis until the end of this year. As for the non-oil countries, their fragile situation is due to the high budget and debt crisis. Secondly, with the collapse of growth, unemployment rates in Arab countries in general will rise by a total of approximately 4%. The third consequence is linked to supply chains, import of necessary goods and stock depletion, as most Arab countries depend on Esther D food and necessities; and this will be affected by the occurrence of bewilderment in the global supply systems”
As for the legal issues arising as a result of the Corona Virus spread, Dr. Muna Al-Marzouqi said, “The rapid spread of the Corona virus has produced many legal effects on contractual obligations and caused a disturbance in the contractual balance between the parties to the contractual relationship.” We mention some examples of legal problems that may occur in various types of contracts: In labor contracts, the question was raised as to the extent to which a worker is entitled to receive his salary while in quarantine, and can workers in the affected sectors be laid off due to a lack of revenues? With regard to lease contracts, merchants wonder about the extent of their obligation to pay the rent in the event that their stores are closed by order of the state. Another questions that arise is whether the lessor have the right to request the eviction of the leased property in the event that the tenant is unable to pay the rental value? While the solutions for filing lawsuits are not effective at the present time, as they are linked to the state’s judicial system, which requires time until the dispute is resolved, especially since court hearings are suspended at the present time due to the pandemic, and judicial services are limited to electronic services and consideration of urgent cases. It is stated that “the solution of legal problems that may arise in some types of contracts lies in looking at each contract and each incident separately, so there is no single answer to solve all these problems.”
It is worth noting that this seminar is the first of several seminars that the Faculty of Business and Economics has recently announced to hold during the period from 2 to 16 May 2020, at the rate of a weekly episode every Saturday during the mentioned period, and with the participation of a number of local and international experts in the economy, finance, business and law And public health. This comes in light of the belief of Qatar University in its role in contributing to the investigation of the repercussions of the global health crisis represented by the spread of the Corona pandemic, and to identify the implications of this crisis for the global and local community in terms of economic, financial and legal.

Source: Qatar University

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