GDP HIT ON MIDDLE EAST: $85B
The International Air Transport Association (IATA) released new data showing the impact on the Middle East aviation industry and on economies caused by the shutdown of air traffic due to the COVID-19 pandemic has deepened over recent weeks.
Job losses in aviation and related industries could grow to 1.5 million. That is more than half of the region’s 2.4 million aviation-related employment and 300,000 more than the previous estimate.
Full-year 2020 traffic is expected to plummet by 56% compared to 2019. Previous estimate was a fall of 51%.
GDP supported by aviation in the region could fall by up to $85 billion. Previous estimate was $66 billion.
Middle East economies have been brought to their knees by COVID-19. And without air connectivity being re-established, the socio-economic impact is getting worse.
Businesses which contribute substantially to the region’s GDP and provide thousands of jobs are at risk without these vital connections.
For the region’s economic recovery, it is imperative that the industry restart safely as soon as possible,” said Muhammad Al Bakri, IATA’s Regional Vice President for Africa and the Middle East.