Budget: 18.53 million jobs to be lost if complete shutdown enforced

According to preliminary estimates compiled by the Pakistan Institute of Development Economics (PIDE), “the COVID-19 pandemic can have an adverse impact on employment generation during the last quarter of 2019-20.”

The Pakistan Economic Survey 2019-20 states that 18.53 million jobs will be lost if the government has to reinforce a complete shutdown to limit coronavirus

With daily reports suggesting a sharpening increase in new cases, the government may have to revisit its lockdown policy soon.

 “In case of limited restrictions, about 1.4 million jobs will be lost, under moderate restrictions employment loss could reach to 12.3 million and 18.53 million people will be unemployed in case of a complete shutdown,” the survey says.

The report cites the Labour Force Survey 2017-18 to estimate the size of the total labour force as 65.5 million, with an unemployment rate of 5.8 percent.

The Pakistan Economic Survey 2019-20, released on Friday in Pakistan Secretariat’s P Block by Adviser to the Prime Minister on Finance Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh, warns that 18.53 million jobs will be lost in case the government has to enforce a complete shutdown to combat the coronavirus.

According to that survey, the highest unemployment (11.56%) is prevalent among the age 20-24, indicating youth unemployment.