The COVID-19 pandemic is having a catastrophic effect on working hours and earnings, globally. A new ILO report highlights some of the worst affected sectors and regions, and outlines policies to mitigate the crisis.
The COVID-19 crisis is expected to wipe out 6.7 per cent of working hours globally in the second quarter of 2020 – equivalent to 195 million full-time workers.
Large reductions are foreseen in the Arab States, (8.1 per cent, equivalent to 5 million full-time workers), Europe, (7.8 per cent, or 12 million full-time workers) and Asia and the Pacific (7.2 per cent, 125 million full-time workers).
Huge losses are expected across different income groups, but especially in upper-middle income countries (7.0 per cent, 100 million full-time workers). This far exceeds the effects of the 2008-9 financial crisis.
The sectors most at risk include accommodation and food services, manufacturing, retail, and business and administrative activities.