The Arab Spring cost the Middle East region over $600bn in lost growth
The Arab Spring of 2011 has cost the region’s economies an estimated $600bn of growth because of governmental changes, continuing conflict and falling oil prices, according to a UN agency, Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA).
The figure from ESCWA, equivalent to six percent of GDP up to the end of last year, is based on growth projections made before the revolutions started.
Published on Thursday, it is the first estimate of its kind by a global economic body.
Syria alone has suffered GDP and capital losses of $259bn since 2011, according to estimates from the National Agenda for the Future of Syria, another UN programme.
Oil prices began to slide in mid-2014 and fell to 13-year lows this January, hitting producer countries such as Saudi Arabia, and others including Lebanon that rely heavily on remittances from citizens working in Arab Gulf states.
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