The economic consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic are enormous and have led to unprecedented economic shocks that are directly felt by households worldwide. According to the ILO, ca. 94 % of the worldwide labour force lives and works in countries that are affected by company closures.
The economic crisis will account for a loss of working hours equivalent to 305 million full-time employees. In the Southern and Eastern Mediterranean, the economic consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic threaten to undo years of economic development. With the Mediterranean citizens at risk of losing their employment and livelihood, they are forced to adapt to a new world of work and economic activity. People already more vulnerable to economic shocks and restricted mobility, such as informal workers, blue-collar workers, youth and women, are specially affected.
At the same time, the crisis can also be the starting point to develop new ways of working as well as new forms of training and education.
With the UfM Grant Scheme for employment promotion - Regional response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the UfM is actively supporting non-profit organizations in the Mediterranean that work to give people opportunities in view of the COVID-19-induced economic crisis. It focuses on projects that enable people to find jobs, continue to gain a living and improve their work and living conditions. At the same time, we seek to support projects that encourage entrepreneurship and improve the business climate for Micro-, Small and Medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) as crucial providers of employment in the Mediterranean region.