Saturday, 5 December 2020

Virus affects 81% of global workforce

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LONDON: The International Labour Organization (ILO) told the World Bank and International Monetary Fund (IMF) that workplace closures have risen so fast that 81% of the global workforce live in countries with mandatory or recommended closures.

ILO Director-General Guy Ryder urged the IMF and World Bank to focus their response on “providing immediate relief to workers and enterprises to protect businesses and livelihoods, particularly in hard-hit sectors and in developing countries”.

“The crisis has uncovered the huge decent work deficits that still prevail in 2020 and shown how vulnerable millions of working people are when a crisis hits,” he said as part of written statements released in Geneva.

Addressing the Spring Meetings of the IMF and World Bank, Ryder said priority attention should be given to the impact on smaller enterprises, unprotected workers, and those in the informal economy in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Workplace closures have increased so rapidly in recent weeks that 81% of the global workforce lives in countries with mandatory or recommended closures.

“In upper-middle-income countries, this represents 87% of the workforce and 70% in high-income countries. COVID-19 is now also impacting the developing world where capacities and resources to respond to the crisis are severely constrained,” said Ryder.

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