Bunyan to Asharq Al-Awsat: We Focus on Post-Crisis Economic Revival, Mitigation of Potential Risks
The head of the Saudi business group (B20), Youssef Al-Bunyan, said that the entity was focusing on cooperation in the exchange of information and experiences in the business community.
He underlined the importance of effective government policies to deal with the effects of the outbreak of the novel coronavirus, the revival of the business sector, and the cooperation between governments and the business community in developing strategies to deal with similar crises in the future.
In an interview with Asharq Al-Awsat, Bunyan said: “The coronavirus is a turning point in the history of business, as it has created a new reality for the next stage. We, as a group, are committed to finding solutions and providing recommendations to G20 leaders on the policies that can be implemented that will allow companies to overcome this pandemic in the long run and prepare for future crises.
He stressed the need to develop a plan of action worldwide to alleviate the repercussions of Corona, provided that it includes short-term measures to prevent a deeper economic and financial crisis.
“The Saudi Business Group, as the official representative of the business community in the G20, plays an important role in the short and long term in dealing with the imminent health, economic and social impact of coronavirus and defining the path of recovery,” Bunyan said.
He revealed that the B20 has recently announced the COVID-19 Initiative, which is aimed at establishing a comprehensive and cross-border system to review many issues pertaining to the health of companies and their employees.
“Over the past weeks, the business group called for urgent efforts to contain the crisis and reduce its impact on global companies and their employees,” he remarked. “These efforts include ensuring free trade and protecting workers on the front lines. We are also keen to support the micro, small, and medium-sized enterprises, which are the lifeblood of our societies and economies, and which were greatly affected during this crisis.”
Bunyan emphasized that access to technology was a top priority, not only to help coordinate and respond to the crisis, but also to support treatment and the search for a vaccine for the virus.
“Everyone must have access to the digital infrastructure, as this is so important in bridging the digital divide in societies that are severely affected by the virus,” he said.