Unemployment to spike on recession, new report warns

Thursday, July 30th, 2020 00:00 | By
World Bank. PHOTO/Courtesy

JOBS: Kenya’s unemployment rate could hit the highest in more than two decades this year due to the coronavirus pandemic, with the economy set to contract more than previously projected in the second quarter, new report reveals.

A new study by Research firm GeoPoll titled The Financial Impact of Coronavirus in Sub-Saharan Africa, further predicts tougher months ahead, warning that more jobs will be on the line with the labour market having already suffered over 1.2 million job losses since March.

First recession

In April, a World Bank Africa’s Pulse report predicted that the global coronavirus pandemic was going to send Africa into its first recession in 25 years, as economies get battered by lockdowns, saying that the continent’s economic growth will also drop from 2.4 per cent in 2019 to between -2.1 to -5.1 per cent in 2020 because of the virus.

Sectors including tourism, retail, and agriculture according to the report, will be hard hit as many countries in sub-Saharan Africa including Mozambique, Nigeria, South Africa, Côte d’Ivoire and Kenya have completely closed to outside visitors.

Those who rely on informal trade will also be negatively impacted by the restrictions on movement that are still ongoing in many countries.

“The effects of Covid-19 will continue to be felt for many months to come, and this study demonstrates the economic impacts of the pandemic in one region,” the report says,  adding most countries are yet peak in Covid-19 cases.      

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