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Authors:Lucia Ferrone (University of Florence)
Margherita Squarcina (University of Florence)
Leonardo Menchini (UNICEF)
Paper short abstract:
We simulate the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on multidimensional child poverty in the MENA region. Results show that as many as 12 million children could have been pushed into multidimensional poverty in the short term, and about 64 million over medium-long term
Paper long abstract:
Children in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region are heavily impacted by the socio-economic crisis generated by the unfolding COVID-19 pandemic. However, children remain marginal and almost invisible in the current policy debate which is mostly centered on the response to the employment and economic aspects of the crisis.
To address the lack of direct evidence about children under the COVID-19 crisis, we simulated the potential impacts of the current crisis on child multidimensional poverty, considering two different time frames.
The simulation analysis estimates that in the initial months of the COVID-19 crisis, the number of children living in multidimensional poverty could have increased by more than 12 million in MENA countries, compared with the pre-crisis scenario. For the medium-term scenario, the simulation analysis indicates that the number of multidimensional poor children could stand at 64 million, half of the population under-18 of the countries included in the analysis, and around 10 million more than in the pre-COVID baseline. These numbers could be the results of effect of the protracted economic crisis on education, access to health and on child nutrition status.
COVID-19 and global development challenges: 'unsettling' multidimensional poverty? II