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At least 50m jobs lost in Arab countries due to pandemic

July 13, 2020 at 10:13 am

Protesters, restricted to work at public offices, stage a protest, demanding their employment, in front of Prime Ministry’s building in Tunis, Tunisia on 25 September 2017 [Yassine Gaidi/Anadolu Agency]

The Covid-19 pandemic has led to serious losses in the tourism industry in the Arab world, with more than 50 million jobs lost, Anadolu reported on Sunday.

A report from the Arab Monetary Fund (AMF) said that the country most affected by the coronavirus is Saudi Arabia, followed by the UAE, Egypt, Tunisia, Morocco and Palestine.

“The tourism industry is one of the most active economic sectors affected by the outbreak of Covid-19 due largely to travel restrictions,” said the AMF. The loss of so many jobs equates to between 12 and 14 per cent of all jobs in the Arab countries.

The Fund pointed out that income from tourism in the Arab countries was $313.6 billion in 2019 compared to $281.5 billion in 2018. It amounts to around 11.4 per cent of their GDP and is expected to have an even greater effect as the industry shrinks due to the pandemic.

This is a global issue, not just limited to the Arab world, which could take three to six years to recover and get back to pre-pandemic levels.

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