Moscow among top 3 cities worldwide for tackling Covid-19 crisis while keeping life going & economy open, Ernst & Young says
Moscow dealt with Covid-19 better than almost every major city in the world by allowing businesses to remain open, avoiding mass unemployment, and preventing an economic catastrophe, all while keeping the virus under control.
That’s according to British consultancy company Ernst & Young (EY), which placed the Russian capital in the top three, behind Oslo and Singapore.
The study chose nine major cities and split them into two categories. Within Moscow’s class – defined as metropolises that “adapted a set of restrictions and support measures based on the changing environment” – the Russian capital performed the best.Also on rt.com As Covid-19 restrictions soften, Russia to resume passenger flights to multiple countries, including Britain, Austria & Hungary
The two major urban centers that came above Moscow in the rankings – Singapore and Oslo – took a different tack, and were placed in the category of cities with “strict and prolonged lockdown restrictions.”
“When considering the specifics of Singapore (an island state) and Oslo (a small population)… Moscow managed to implement the most optimal set of measures to overcome the consequences of the pandemic,” the study concluded, according to EY partner Olga Arkhangelskaya.
The indicators used by EY included changes in Gross Regional Product, growth in unemployment, the number of Covid-19 cases, as well as the number of deaths from the virus.
“In Moscow, the unemployment rate (1%) was the lowest among the analyzed cities, and the fall in GRP, according to preliminary estimates, was only 4%,” Arkhangelskaya wrote.
Unlike many other European nations, Russia’s Covid-19 lockdown was very strict but also very short. At the end of March, the country went into a six-week quarantine aimed at keeping as many people at home as possible, using the time to rapidly bulk-up hospital capacity. After the month and a half, each Russian region was given autonomy over their own lockdowns, and Moscow was eventually fully opened by mid-summer.
During the restrictions, Moscow supported businesses by allowing the deferral of taxes and other payments, while providing subsidized loans to smaller companies.
Speaking to Kommersant, Marcel Salikhov of Moscow’s Higher School of Economics noted that the city budget increased by more than 500 billion rubles ($6.8 million).
“This helped to quickly and aggressively increase spending on health care and social purposes,” he explained.
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