Socio-economic assessment of the COVID-19 impact in Europe and Central Asia
The COVID-19 pandemic presents severe socio-economic challenges for communities as well as many countries which are not well equipped to cope with and adapt to a prolonged economic downturn. In countries of Europe and the CIS, there are existing national socio-economic vulnerabilities to COVID-19 that are in many cases determined by the structure of their economy and demographic trends. Particularly in the Western Balkans and Eastern Europe, populations are shrinking and ageing—trends that exacerbate strains on social protection and the healthcare systems. However, in Azerbaijan and countries in Central Asia, rapid growth in young population cohorts is straining both the labour market absorption capacities and youth-related social services. These differences have different implications for coping mechanisms and measures to respond to the pandemic.
The project aims to produce socio-economic research and assessment, which would enhance the understanding of the socio-economic impact of COVID-19 at household and community level, its impact on SMEs and their ability to cope with a prolonged period of supply and demand shocks in which would help to identify the key sectors influenced as well as to support the development of policies and programmes that can ameliorate the impact of COVID-19 in the community-level.
The project is directly in line with the COVID-19: UNDP´s Integrated Response: Three by Three that puts social and economic impact needs assessment and response as one of its three immediate priorities for the containment of COVID-19 and protection of the most vulnerable.