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PHOTO BY ARCHIVE
DUBAI – The economic effects of the new coronavirus or Covid-19 could lead to 25 million job losses around the world, according to the International Labour Organisation (ILO).
The ILO estimates an increase in global unemployment of between 5.3 million and 24.7 million.
Underemployment is also expected to increase on a large scale, as the economic consequences of the virus outbreak translate into reductions in working hours and wages.
Falls in employment also means large income losses for workers. The study estimates an income loss of between $860 billion and $3.4 trillion by the end of 2020. This will translate into falls in the consumption of goods and services, in turn affecting the prospects for businesses and economies.
Working poverty is expected to increase significantly too, as “the strain on incomes resulting from the decline in economic activity will devastate workers close to or below the poverty line”.
The ILO estimates that between 8.8 and 35 million additional people will be in working poverty worldwide, compared to the original estimate for 2020, which projected a decline of 14 million worldwide.
“This is no longer only a global health crisis, it is also a major labour market and economic crisis that is having a huge impact on people,” said ILO Director-General Guy Ryder.
“In 2008, the world presented a united front to address the consequences of the global financial crisis, and the worst was averted. We need that kind of leadership and resolve now,” Ryder added.
The ILO note warns that certain groups will be disproportionately affected by the jobs crisis, which could increase inequality. These include people in less protected and low-paid jobs, particularly youth, older workers, women and migrants too. WAM/Expat Media
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