The Economic Impact of COVID-19 on the Middle East: Recession, Response, and Recovery
Date and time: September 17, 2020, 4 pm Arabia Standard Time (UTC+3)
- Khalid Abu-Ismail, senior economist, United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia
- Tim Callen, chief of GCC Division, Middle East and Central Asia Department, International Monetary Fund
- Bessma Momani, professor of political science, University of Waterloo
Online moderator: Tarik M. Yousef, senior fellow and director, Brookings Doha Center
The combined impacts of COVID-19 and the oil price collapse over the course of 2020 have resulted in the biggest economic contraction in the Middle East on record. These twin shocks have shut down economic activity and placed severe limits on fiscal resources available to cushion the socioeconomic impact and support recovery. Meanwhile, the decline in international remittances and transfer payments has created additional pressures on livelihoods and social safety nets. As a result, many low- and middle-income countries in the region have experienced sharp increases in unemployment, poverty, and socioeconomic vulnerability. With continued doubts about the course of the pandemic, the recovery of the global economy, including the Middle East, remains highly uncertain.
The Brookings Doha Center invites you to attend a webinar on the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the Middle East and the prospects for recovery in 2020/21. The discussion will address the downturn’s impact on government finances, social protection, poverty, and inequality, focusing on the following questions: Where have policymakers succeeded in cushioning the impact of the recession and where have they failed? Which economic sectors and segments of the population are likely to experience long-term losses? And are the region’s economies prepared for a resurgence of the pandemic and the potential impact of a prolonged downturn on political instability and social unrest?
IMPORTANT: For English language, use the English interpretation channel and click “Mute Original Audio.”
Kindly note that there is a maximum capacity to join this webinar
The discussion will include a “Question and Answer” session.
All attendees will have the chance to submit questions via the Q&A option in the Zoom webinar and these can be submitted anonymously during the time allocated for Q&A.