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Evaluating the Impacts of the COVID-19 Pandemic on Income Distribution and Poverty in Turkey

Nov 30, 2020

As the Covid-19 virus takes hold of countries all over the world, economies are falling into a deep recession. The recent World Economic Outlook by the World Bank forecasts that Turkey’s GDP is likely to contract by 5 % in 2020. Unlike this, the Minister of Finance and Treasury has recently announced a 0.3 % growth rate in 2020. Governments worldwide, under the impact of the outbreak, introduce massive fiscal measures mostly to revive economic growth.


However, the impacts of the pandemic on inequality and poverty are likely to be unprecedented, and this issue is largely ignored. What the world economy needs is an inclusive economic growth policy coupled with a comprehensive redistribution component. The objective of this policy brief is to present the results of the likely impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on unemployment, inequality, and poverty in Turkey.


Using data from the Survey of Income and Living Conditions in 2017, the brief is based on an empirical examination to estimate the impacts of the pandemic on unemployment in different sectors and on inequality and poverty. The results show that the pandemic is likely to cause a dramatic increase not only in unemployment but also in inequality and poverty in Turkey. 


This article is part of the CMI/FEMISE joint “COVID-19 Med Policy Brief Series”, aimed at addressing the urgent issue of the COVID-19 socio-economic effects and impact on the EU-Mediterranean region.


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