RESEARCH PAPERS ARE PRELIMINARY MATERIALS CIRCULATED TO STIMULATE DISCUSSION AND CRITICAL COMMENT. THE VIEWS EXPRESSED ARE THOSE OF THE INDIVIDUAL AUTHORS. WHILE RESEARCH PAPERS BENEFIT FROM ACTIVE UHERO DISCUSSION, THEY HAVE NOT UNDERGONE FORMAL ACADEMIC PEER REVIEW.
The economy of Hawaii was extremely vulnerable to the COVID-19 pandemic due to its heavy reliance on tourism. This article is a thorough survey of issues affecting a tourism-dependent open economy during the COVID-19 pandemic. We provide a comprehensive analysis of the pandemic’s economic impact in Hawaii by comparing the actual outcomes during the affected period with the pre-pandemic forecast. We explain why Hawaii’s experience differed from other states, suggest reasons for a slow recovery, and discuss the pandemic’s lasting effects in the Islands. We also describe changes in the economic forecasting process necessitated by the increase in uncertainty.