BIZweek n°371 3 déc 2021
BIZweek n°371 3 déc 2021
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  • Parution : n°371 de 3 déc 2021

  • Périodicité : hebdomadaire

  • Editeur : Capital Publications Ltd

  • Format : (260 x 370) mm

  • Nombre de pages : 10

  • Taille du fichier PDF : 2,2 Mo

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VENDREDI 03 DÉCEMBRE 2021 BIZWEEK ÉDITION 371 ACTA PUBLICA INTERNATIONAL SOS RISK OUTLOOK 2022 Investment in employee health to increase in response to complex risk outlook Organisations worldwide are set to increase investment in employee health. That’s the findings of the International SOS Risk Outlook 2022. The report andupdated global risk maps also signal that organisations are grappling with an increasingly complex risk landscape The survey of nearly 1,000 risk professionals across 75 countries, coupled with insight from the Workforce Resilience Council and International SOS proprietary data, indicates that both mental and physical health support will see increased investment. In fact, over half (56%) of organisations intend to increase spending on both. Organisations are facing a dual challenge on the health front. Along with the physical aspects of COVID-19 safety, the pandemic has significantly contributed to a mental health crisis. Over a third of respondents (36%) expect mental health to cause a significant decrease in productivity in 2022. The need for increased investment comes as organisations expect to face increased risks in 2022. Over two thirds (68%) of organisations anticipate risks to increase or stay the same next year. In particular, decision makers responsible for business travel (69%) and international assignees (67%) expect risk levels to increase or stay the same in 2022. TOP FIVE EXPECTED CAUSES OF EMPLOYEE PRODUCTIVY DECREASES IN 2022 COVID-19 Mental health issues Natural disasters including extreme weather Transport concerns Security threats and civil unrest Dr Neil Nerwich, Group Medical Director at International SOS comments, « In 2022 we are facing a layered threat environment. Entering the third year of the pandemic, while COVID-19 and the fallout from lockdowns continue to be major disruptors, other risks are coming Five predictions for 2022 back to the fore as travel resumes. With many experts predicting 2022 will be the year of the ‘great resignation’organisations must act to ensure they provide the necessary support for employees. Investing in both emotional health and physical wellness support will be essential for employee retention. This willalso help to avoid a vicious cycle of productivity issues. With many governments and healthcare systems under increased strain, proactive organisations can lead the way. Those that can best help employees navigate changing working environments, will be rewarded with increased employee resilience, loyalty and productivity. » Drawing on the findings of the Risk Outlook survey, the Workforce Resilience Council and the organisation’s proprietary data, International SOS’top five predictions for next year are  : 1. COVID-19, Long COVID, & mental health will be primary employee productivity disruptors in 2022  : escalating absenteeism and continuity issues. 2. The infodemic will continue to exacerbate the complex nature of protecting people, while Duty of Care obligations are reshaped by new health & safety measures, employee expectations, & regulatory compliance. 3. Pandemic-disrupted activities will reach a degree of stability by 2023, as organisations utilise health & security risk management as a competitive advantage  : supporting employee retention, and willingness to return to activities incl. business travel. 4. Organisations risk being caught off-guard by rapidly changing security environments, as civil disorder and geopolitical volatility will rise above prepandemic levels. 5. Climate change will increase the frequency and impact of climatesensitive hazards, such as infectious diseases, extreme weather events, and socioeconomic tensions. Risk Outlook 2022 will be presented at global webinars between 7-9th December 2021. COVID-19 continues to disrupt, as organisations struggle to respond For many organisations COVID-19 will continue to be a significant operational challenge. A third (33%) of respondents said that having adequate resources to deal with the virus was a top challenge for 2022. Surprisingly, this increased to nearly half (47%) of organisations based in Asia. This suggests that the continent first impacted by COVID-19 may still be dealing with disruption for some time to come. Meanwhile, respondents from Western Europe and the Americas were more likely to be challenged by COVID-19 policies and more specifically, the need to define testing and vaccine policies for COVID-19. 36% of respondents in Western Europe and the Americas cited this as an issue compared to a global average of 25%. To respond to these challenges, the management of the ongoing significant impact of COVID-19 needs to be carefully considered. Organisations will need to draw on expertise of business leaders as wellas functions such as HR and risk management. Perennial security concerns a continued risk While the pandemic tops the lists of concerns, other perennial security risks are expected to cause disruption in 2022. With concern growing over climate change, 21% of respondents predicted that natural disasters including extreme weather would be disruptive in 2022. This was closely followed by transport concerns – for local, domestic and international travel – (19%) and security threats and civil unrest (16%). Mick Sharp, Group Director Security Services at International SOS, said, « In 2022 organisations must be aware that perennial security concerns such as crime, civil unrest, terrorism or other geopolitical issues have not gone away due to the pandemic. In many cases the risks from these concerns have actually grown. Tensions around pandemic lockdowns, vaccine rollouts, and perceived infringements on civil liberties have fuelled civil unrest and violence in some locations. With the increased use of vaccine mandates or restrictions on unvaccinated individuals around the world we can expect to see tensions heighten throughout 2022. Aside from the COVID-19 related triggers, natural disasters, geo-politics, domestic conflict and crime will continue to impact organisations globally. This impact will further increase in 2022 with a growing return to travel and an increased focus on the Duty of Care requirements of an in-country workforce. » In response, organisations must identify internal and external crisis management blind spots and act now to make effective decisions and strengthen their resilience. They must keep travelling staff, as wellas domestic workforces, reliably informedwith objective, forward-leaning location specific health and security information. Staying on top of regulatory changes willalso be critical, making sure that they have the right processes in place to fulfil Duty of Care obligations. 6
VENDREDI 03 DÉCEMBRE 2021 BIZWEEK ÉDITION 371 POST SCRIPTUM OECD – WTO JOINT STUDY Slash services trade red tape The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and the WTO released on 26 November a trade policy brief highlighting the economic benefits that would result from a new deal on services domestic regulation being finalised by a group of 67 WTO members. The study finds that annual cost savings in services trade could amount to USD 150 billion globally due to a reduction in red tape and increased transparency, with particularly important gains for financial, business, communications and transport services Entitled ‘Services domestic regulation in the WTO  : Cutting red tape, slashing trade costs, and facilitating services trade’, the study looks at how improved regulatory systems for licensing and authorizing services suppliers would lead to savings. The 67 WTO members (1) taking part in this initiative represent 90 per cent of world services trade. They are aiming for a successful outcome to be announced at the 12th Ministerial Conference (MC12), which begins on 30 November. The final deal will be applied on a ‘most-favoured nation’basis, meaning that it will benefit all WTO members. The study finds that implementing the outcome will : Improve the business climate  : by enhancing the transparency, efficiency and predictability of regulatory frameworks, the new disciplines willaddress the practical challenges that affect the ability of businesses and suppliers to operate in foreign markets. Lower trade costs and lead to other trade benefits  : annual savings could amount to USD 150 billion globally, with important gains for financial, business, communications and transport services. Moreover, the implementation of the new disciplines would increase the value of services trade and lead to enhanced participation in global value chains. Facilitate services trade  : while an increasing number of « new generation » ambitious trade agreements are being concluded, economies at all levels are also implementing reforms on services trade. Implementing the outcome of the negotiations would ensure that domestic regulatory arrangements can open trade opportunities for services providers, particularly for small businesses. Generate widespread gains beyond the participants  : exporters from all WTO members will benefit from the improved regulatory conditions when they trade with participants in this joint initiative. Services are the most dynamic and fastest growing sector of today’s global economy. They represent over 60% of world GDP in value-added terms and more than 50% of employment worldwide. Services also provide critical inputs to other sectors. For instance, transport, logistics, communications or financial services facilitate the functioning of global value chains while research, development or engineering services foster productivity and innovation in all economies. Thereby, services constitute a critical component of a sound, sustainable, and inclusive economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. However, the ability of service suppliers to engage in trade and the potential of the services sector overall remains constrained by a variety of trade barriers  : the cost of trading services is twice as high as that of goods, and regulation-related factors account for more than 40% of these costs (WTO World Trade Report, 2019). OECD estimates suggest that the barriers recorded in the OECD Services Trade Restrictiveness Index (STRI) involve average trade costs between 50% and 250% of export values (Benz & Jaax, 2020). Among the obstacles, the lack of transparency of laws and regulations, and pervasive procedural inefficiencies figure prominently. In the services field, many activities require licenses or authorisations to operate. International discussions on services domestic regulation aim to facilitate trade in services by eliminating the unintended trade-restrictive effects of such measures. The Joint Initiative on Services Domestic Regulation will conclude at the 12th WTO Ministerial Conference negotiations on a set of good regulatory practices to enhance transparency, efficiency, and predictability of regulatory systems to obtain authorization to supply services - the « Reference Paper on Services Domestic Regulation ». Sixty-six WTO members are currently participating in this plurilateral negotiating process, covering more than 90% of world services trade. Over the past years, many economies have introduced broad internal regulatory reforms to streamline their regulations in services sectors and signal their commitment to good regulatory practices to any interested – foreign or domestic – suppliers. Most of these policy reforms are of horizontal nature, affecting a large number of sectors. Financial services stand out with the greatest sector-specific efforts towards more efficient services regulation. 7 Cont’d on page 8

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