Impact of COVID-19 on poverty in Arab countries


Poverty in Arab countries was on the rise before COVID-19. The pandemic only further exposed and accentuated the existing deficiencies that drive poverty and inequality in the region.

This is one of the four main results of a recent report issued by ESCWA on the impact of the pandemic on income poverty and the cost of poverty eradication in 14 Arab countries.

Using grouped household income and expenditure survey data, the report indicates that by 2021, an additional 16 million people are projected to be in poverty in the Arab region, and an additional 9 million people to live with less than $1.9 per day.

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