Will 2021 mark the start of the post-Covid era?

Expectations are high that 2021 will turn out to be better than 2020 - at least as far as the Covid pandemic is concerned. But not all commentators believe these hopes are justified, and some are already focusing on what comes after the pandemic.

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Jurnalul National (RO) /

Things looking up for the global economy

Jurnalul National wonders whether 2021 will be a bull or bear year:

“Those familiar with the capital markets know that they can have the energy of a young bull (when stocks rise) or the laziness of a bear (when stocks fall). ... The Covid-19 pandemic determined stock market trends in 2020, and now the positive effects of the vaccination campaigns are determining the stock market forecasts for the beginning of 2021. ... In its latest weekly report on trends and financial risks, the financial supervisory authority also specified that the EU-wide vaccination programme has 'increased investor appetite for risk'. So the favorable outlook for Covid-19 vaccines could make 2021 a year when the global economy recovers and financial markets hear the bull's gallop again.”

Jyllands-Posten (DK) /

Giving rural areas a chance

In the pandemic, many workers as well as companies have come to recognise and appreciate the advantages of working from home. Jyllands-Posten says this opens up new perspectives for Denmark:

“There is reason to hope that the coronavirus has taught us to be more flexible in our working lives. ... To the benefit of family life, the environment and also so-called 'outer Denmark' [the rural areas], which are depopulated, while in the big cities real estate prices are exploding. And clearly, living in Copenhagen or Aarhus is about more than jobs. But not having to battle your way through traffic jams into the city every day can make it easier to decide not to live in one. And this could pave the way for a broader distribution of the population and thus for a more united Denmark.”

Delo (SI) /

We are being deprived of our dreams

For Delo, the ongoing uncertainty is a hallmark of our current way of life:

“The pandemic has taken away the most important part of the future: being able to plan for it, imagine it, strive for it, and even daydream about it. Studies showed long ago that planning for events in the future is at least as important and satisfying as the events themselves. ... We get through Tuesdays only thanks to the thought of Friday, we get through weeks of hard work and saving thanks to the prospect of holidays, and we enjoy shopping for the ingredients for a dinner with friends. ... Never has the world we live in needed the dream of better things to come more urgently.”

Magyar Hang (HU) /

Best to live in the present

We should not spend all our time waiting for the post-corona period, Magyar Hang admonishes:

“It really seems pointless to make any forecasts for 2021. In any event, most of them would be related to the coronavirus and when we'll 'get our lives back'. But all that does is make things worse. We can't live in the future, continually looking forward to the year to come, under the spell of a liberation-yet-to-come. Politics has already shown us how terrible it is when we think no further than the next four years while our lives - which this year too will probably not be at all like they were before - pass us by.”

Dnevnik (BG) /

Dawn of a new age

The time after the coronavirus pandemic will mark the start of a new era comparable to the 1920s, writer Vladimir Levchev comments in Dnevnik:

“After World War I and the [Spanish flu] pandemic came the age of jazz and the 'roaring twenties' - a decade of economic prosperity, parties, bars, entertainment, and carefree living. ... I assume this will also come about after the end of the Covid-19 pandemic. ... However, we also know that the age of jazz at the end of that decade ended with the Great Depression, and that ten years later came the Second World War. I hope that the 21st century, the age of artificial intelligence, will be smarter than the previous one.”

Cyprus Mail (CY) /

Expectations too high

It's premature to hope that the start of vaccination will usher in a new era, the Cyprus Mail believes:

“Will it get rid of Covid? This won't happen right away because firstly vaccination will be a slow process and secondly the best that can be hoped for from the shots right now is a reduction in symptoms, leading to much fewer deaths. This would of course be a major development but not enough to restore normality for the best part of the coming year. If Covid or its cousins mutate even more, well, all bets will be off. Looking forward, the only thing left to say about 2021 really is… roll on 2022.”