The Russian war has caused colossal job and income losses for Ukrainians, destroying nearly a third of all jobs in the country and threatening the loss of millions more if the conflict continues, the labor organization said Wednesday. of the United Nations.
The economic upheaval, coupled with a huge outflow of refugees and large-scale internal displacement, has wiped out 4.8 million jobs in Ukraine since the start of Russian aggression, the agency said. work, in his prime report on the economic consequences of the invasion. If the military escalation continues, more than 43 percent of jobs – around seven million – could be lost, she added.
The report highlighted the grim economic toll of Russian aggression and the challenges facing Ukraine, neighboring countries and the global economy should the war spread into a protracted crisis.
Economic activity in Ukraine has essentially stalled in much of the country, forcing about 50% of Ukrainian businesses to close, a situation exacerbated by the destruction of buildings, roads, hospitals and other essential physical assets. An estimated $ 60 billion to $ 100 billion worth of critical infrastructure was damaged or destroyed in just the first month of the conflict.
If the invasion does not end quickly, up to 90 percent of the Ukrainian population could face poverty or vulnerability to poverty, the organization warned. The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development predicted on Tuesday that the Ukrainian economy will shrink by 30% this year.
Ukraine’s neighbors are also not spared. Of the more than 5.2 million refugees who fled hostilities, many have landed in Hungary, Poland, Moldova, Romania and Slovakia. While those countries are working to integrate newcomers, the prospect of protracted conflict means refugees could stay in exile longer than expected, putting pressure on labor markets and possibly increasing unemployment in host countries, he said. the ILO.
Russia’s own economic crisis in the wake of punitive international sanctions is also spreading beyond its borders. The economies of countries such as Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan, which depend on remittances from hundreds of thousands of migrant workers in Russia. If they were to lose their jobs and be forced to return to their home countries, “there would be severe economic losses throughout Central Asia,” the ILO said.
A protracted conflict would also continue to disrupt the global economy through rising commodity prices, especially food and fuel.
“Higher rates of inflation will have a negative impact on incomes and poverty, especially among the poor who rely on wages as their main source of income,” the organization concluded.