Yay! the very last sleeve of 2020 has been rolled off and packed up to reveal the year 2021 to glaring limelight. Every single one of us unequivocally has our individual narratives concerning 2020 and our dealings (or, rather, its dealings?) with the year.
I once had a funny friend tell me this year is off of her birthday count. As far as she is concerned, the year 2020 didn’t exist for her, lol. Some friends and acquaintances on the other hand zealously highlight their records of breakthroughs, success landmarks in spectacular areas of their lives, positive persons. As they say, different strokes for different folks. Guess that applies here too.
But beyond the different polls and opinions for the year, a general outlook of the year 2020 will in the least evoke the euphemistic remark that 2020 has been “quite a year”. For one thing, the unprecedented global pandemic truly posed diverse level of hiccups to everyone, wherever you are in the world, insignificantly compared to the global and national economic, political and social setbacks wrought by the covid-19 disease.
Year 2020 witnessed a major milestone in the world of politics with one of the most controversial US presidential election in its national history. The concerted civil protests against socio-political injustice definitely took a rather dauntless dimension this year with the likes of the (George Floyd) anti- Racism protest, the Nigerian EndSars Movement, the Belarusians massive protests for free and fair elections, with major dramatic and significantly novel events arising this year, there are really more reasons to be deliberate and enthusiastic about the emerging new year.
Speaking, not as some astrologer, or a soothsayer, or a prophet, mind you, my predictions for the coming year are mostly influenced by the evidences of rapidity in changes, which mostly have been unprecedented and beyond control. Globally speaking, it’s expected that national and international communities will enforce a more deliberate and measured approach to emergent trends already initiated in the year
- Global Health maintenance culture
With the coronavirus pandemic still remaining a global crisis, and a persistent cause for socio-economic instabilities amidst intermittent lockdowns, there will be a sustainable focal shift to human health considerations, with consistent personal behavioral adaptive changes such as hand-washing, wearing masks and social distancing. There however is hopeful news that with the development of vaccines to combat the disease, 2021 will experience a mitigation of the spread and impact of the SARS-COV-2, the virus that spreads the disease.
2. Technological inclinations and artificial intelligence
2020 has no doubt been one of the most unpredictable years in recent history, one of the major shift being a fast paced attachment to technology and digital operations. It’s expected that 2021 will further accommodate and expand this tech evolution in almost every industries and sectors to institutionalize more virtual platforms for operations to simulate real life as much as possible, without the actual risks of human interaction. There will be increased demand for artificial intelligence and technical expertise in the job markets and business enterprise than the requirement for manpower skills.
3. Relatively normalized and stabilized global economy
With the global economy being the second worst hit index by the pandemic in the year, thus inducing a significant downturn slope in the gross domestic product across many countries, the world’s economy is currently unstable, experiencing inconsistencies in its recovery particularly with the intermittent lockdowns and the Covid-related territorial travel restrictions. However there is high hopes for a more normalized recovery in the coming years, especially with the recent progress on coronavirus vaccines, more so the intervention strategies pulled by central banks across countries to cut interest rates and purchase more assets, also to help national governments to conveniently pay their debts.
According to International Monetary Fund (IMF) report in October, “the world economy has started to recover, but the return to pre- pandemic levels may be long, uneven and uncertain”. In the local economic scene, it’s probable that Nigeria will experience a further devaluation of the naira with the expected cut in interest rates. the current recession being experienced might take more than the first quarter of 2021, against the finance minister’s foresight, to fully recover to normality. On the other hand, with the current fluctuations in oil markets due to the second wave of the pandemic and the threat of shutdown across countries, particularly Europe, one of the nation’s main exchange markets, there might be a drastic drop in the foreign exchange rates, and an urgent need to further diversify the nation’s foreign exchange earnings.
4. Increased focus on boardrooms diversity, proxy meetings: surely 2020 was short of no surprises for meetings and conference conveniences. Daresay it became the first scape goat of the pandemic. With the level of diversified options been introduced, the same trend is most likely going to remain and increase. So we’re gonna have more of virtual meetings, conferences, webinars, even proxy dates too.
5. Increased online enterprise and business channels: well if you were not one of those that made an upgrade shift to maximizing online and social media channels for your business advertisement and product sales, I bet you’re already strategizing plans to usefully implement online media, it’s for these reasons that emphasis will be placed more on virtual business advantages as the new year unfolds. In the same vein, remote works from home won’t be quickly eliminated in the new year, particularly with the positive outlook it proffered this year.
6. Uneven climate and weather changes: like it was experienced in almost every regions of Nigeria this year, the uneven weather distribution doesn’t seem to promise better days with the depleting ecosystem. On the global scene however, Ecowatch.com predicts a colder climate than 2020 or recent years.
7. More drastic pull to religious and spiritual activities: Not like religious institutions and events ceased anyway, however with the nature of sinister uncertainties the year portrayed, it’d be little wonder that the society and humanity would consistently value the need for spiritual events and activities as some sort of pious refuge against possible future uncertainties.
8. Eventful sporting competitions and activities: Events in world sport have majorly been rescheduled or indefinitely postponed this current year, including the Olympics and Euro 2020 being deferred to allow the local football leagues the chance to conclude their season for the year. Most sporting competitions have been outlined for 2021, including the international premier league and the UEFA champions’ league. And hopefully they all hold. Hopefully.
9. 2021 in politics and governance will probably take a more frictional dimension: With the row of significant open protest staged this year, we are agitated for more transparent and representational leadership. For one thing, in the foreign scene, the U.S. change in administration projects massive implication on policy decisions with some being largely compromising and criticized. Across the world, political decisions and agenda will have a lot to determine the outlook of many other sectors including economy and international relations.
10. Gradual comeback for live, outdoor entertainment: with 2020 dawning a great shift in media and entertainment trends, giving vast market premium to streaming services and online media companies like Netflix, Amazon and DisneyPlus, and of course the podcasting industry, outdoor entertainment including movie theatres and movie studios on the other hand plummeted ignominiously. There are hopes however that live, outdoor entertainment and media will have a slow comeback as the year progresses and with the advent of vaccines against coronavirus.
Happy new year to you and our other esteemed readers and subscribers. Let’s start the new year on a grand mode. See the list of open opportunities being compiled for each month of the year.