In a long queue, Stephan stands – waiting with apparent weariness and boredom – his turn to get the food basket provided by a mosque in the west of the British capital, London, for the benefit of Muslims and non-Muslims.
Perhaps Stephan would never have imagined that he would take such a position, and he was working in a classified hotel in the heart of the capital, where the tourism boom provided hundreds of thousands of jobs and good incomes, before the Corona pandemic came to the tourism sector in the United Kingdom and puts hundreds of thousands of people in front of a ghost. The unemployment. Read also MasterCard raises fees by 400% on British purchases from Europe .. What does this mean for consumers?Economic benefits and messages to Europe .. This is how Turkey and Britain reached a huge trade agreement Britain and Turkey sign a free trade agreement Britain and the Brexit dilemma … Ministers advise food storage and plans to bail out ailing industries
Stephan says, “Maybe my situation is good compared to others who have families to support. As for me, I live alone, and I manage through aid, and I was forced to give up my house because I was unable to pay the monthly installments,” indicating with his hand the number of people who want to get food.
In Britain alone, about 2.6 million people are threatened with losing their work by the end of this year, despite the gradual opening of the closures caused by the Corona pandemic, but at the global level, the numbers can only be described as terrifying.
Unemployment is everywhere
The ILO Observatory figures show that during the year 2020 – the year of the outbreak of the epidemic – 8.8% of global working hours were lost, which means the loss of 255 million full-time jobs, and this number is 4 times the number of jobs lost during the 2009 financial crisis.
According to the organization, the reason for these large losses is the reduction in the working hours of those who are still working and the number of those who work from home part-time, referring to a phenomenon called “lethargy.” That is, people have left the job market because they can no longer work due to restrictions imposed, closures, and the difficulty of working from home.
The organization warns that looking at unemployment rates alone will not provide a clear picture of the jobs lost, adding that these losses in the labor market led to a decrease in global labor income by 8.3%, or about $ 3.7 trillion, or 4.4% of global GDP.
The Labor Organization Observatory does not expect any improvement in the labor market during the current year, as most countries are still living in a state of complete or partial closure, and there are still fears of new waves of the epidemic. Advertising
Collapse of savings
A poll opinion conducted by the Center “Pew” American (Pew) Statistics, that one of every four adults has encountered a problem in the payment of bills since the outbreak of the epidemic, and that a third of employees decreased value of funds in savings accounts and savings for them to cover their expenses.
Also, one in 6 adults had to borrow money from friends or family or obtain food from the food bank, indicating that this situation was limited to those who do not have university degrees or the poor groups, but it is spreading among other classes.
Even for those who did not lose their job (workers), many of them had to reduce their working hours or cut their salaries due to the economic repercussions of the epidemic, and about a third of adults (32%) said this had happened to them or one of their family members, while 21% said it had happened. To them personally, and most workers who experienced this situation (60%) are now earning less than they were before the coronavirus outbreak.
The most affected women
Working women were the most affected, and according to the World Economic Forum and the International Labor Organization, 5% of the world’s women lost their jobs compared to 3.9% of men, and according to the same source, women during the epidemic are the most likely to exit the labor market.
Young people have been affected the most by the epidemic, and here is where the danger lies; This is because 8.7% of young people between 18 and 24 years of age lost their jobs during the past year due to Corona, and the Labor Organization Observatory sounds a warning bell about this phenomenon, stressing that it will create a “lost generation and the risks are many”, as unemployment among young people is so high. Increasingly, it will increase the anger of this group, which may move to express its anger in uncontrollable and calculated forms.
The World Economic Forum and the British National Statistics Authority agree that workers in the hotel and restaurant sector are the most affected, as the number of jobs in these sectors decreased by more than 20%, followed by the retail trade and manufacturing sectors. In contrast, the number of jobs increased in the media, communications, banking and insurance sectors in the second and third quarters of 2020.
is there a hope?
Recovering these lost jobs – which are estimated in the tens of millions – will not be easy nor quick, according to Moody’s credit rating agency projections. It will take 3 years until 2024 for the United States to regain 22 job vacancies that were lost with the onset of the epidemic. It rises to 47 million if the government support program stops.
And if the matter will require all this time in a country like the United States, which leads all the countries of the world in the process of vaccination; How will it be in the rest of the world?
According to Moody’s forecasts, the labor market recovery will be slower compared to the growth of GDP, and the only hope remains is the speed of the pollination process and the reopening of the economy, but it seems that this process, too, will not be as fast as required, according to the Economist. A country like Egypt needs two years – that is, until 2023 – to have enough vaccines available for all of its citizens.
All eyes are set for the end of next September, which is the month when many government support programs are expected to end in Britain, the United States, Germany and other countries, at which time the real numbers of unemployment in the world due to the epidemic will appear.