This report features data at mid-point of this project, after eight rounds of data collection and 4,940 interviews.
The interviews were conducted in English, pidgin, Igbo, Hausa and Yoruba across all the Nigeria’s six geopolitical regions. All interviews were conducted by trained Nigerian researchers.
The impact of COVID-19 has been significant on GEEP clients, many of whom live in poverty. We are seeing early signs of the situation improving as lockdown measures ease.
Impact on Income: 9 in 10 GEEP clients have experienced a reduction in their income because of COVID-19. The severity has decreased somewhat over time; in the later rounds, clients were more likely to report that their incomes had ‘slightly decreased’ rather than ‘extremely decreased.’ The latter category reached a peak of 74% in early October and since has dropped to 56% in late November.
Impact on Businesses: Business closures due to COVID-19 have decreased significantly since the beginning of data collection, from 57% in August to 18% in late November, offering a sign of hope for businesses that struggled during lockdown. Nevertheless, businesses continue to struggle with a lack of customers, closures due to COVID-19 restrictions and constrained supply chains.
Coping Mechanisms: Clients are relying heavily on savings, borrowing, and reducing investment to weather the pandemic. These coping mechanisms may provide short-term relief that exacerbates long-term financial distress. Male clients (35%) appeared to borrow slightly more than female customers (31%).