European countries’ travel restrictions related to the covid-19 pandemic could cause the African continent to lose 17.4 million jobs and 102 billion euros by the end of the year, according to a report by the Tony Blair Institute.
The report estimates the economic impact of restrictions imposed on international travelers, namely the mandatory 14-day quarantine on arrival in countries considered to be at risk, in the African tourism and air transport sectors by the end of this year.
According to the study, 51% of tourists in Africa arrive from Europe, but the need to quarantine on return is reducing tourism.
The authors, Rajkumar Mayank Singh and Jonathan Said, estimate that in the best case scenario, African countries will lose 7.6 million jobs and 53 billion dollars (45 billion euros), but the worst case scenario admits the loss 17.4 million jobs and 120 billion dollars (102 billion euros).
“Given Africa’s dependence on intercontinental travel, especially for tourism, these restrictions are at risk of impairing the continent’s ability to recover from the economic effects of the pandemic,” says Said, who is responsible for studies on Inclusive Growth at the Institute for Global Transformation. , founded by the former British Prime Minister.
The report urges governments in African countries, the EU and the UK to work “as quickly as possible” within a framework of rules and measures that involve social distance, testing and tracking contacts at airports and flights to allow the flow of travel to be resumed.
As well as financial support given to African countries, through grants or debt suspension, “restarting air travel with African nations entirely can be equally important,” said Said.
The covid-19 pandemic has already claimed more than 1.1 million deaths and more than 40 million cases of infection worldwide, according to a report by the French agency AFP.
In Africa, 39,738 confirmed deaths were registered in more than 1.6 million infected people in 55 countries, reflecting a lower number of cases, hospitalizations and mortality rates than in other continents
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