Compounding Crises: Will COVID-19 and Lower Oil Prices Prompt a New Development Paradigm in the Arab Region?

Feb 28, 2021

This report offers a regional-level reference for discussion and analysis of the impacts of COVID-19 on development across the Arab States. It also suggests integrated and sectoral policy responses at the country and regional levels.

In this way, the report both stands as a complement to UNDP's role as technical lead of the UN socio-economic response at the country-level, and a reference for national, regional and global discussions on policy responses.

There report comes at a time when policymakers and practitioners are continuing to search for solutions to new and growing development challenges. It echoes the Secretary-General's and UNDP Administrator's messages that the time is now for leaders and policymakers to make bold choices. COVID-19 presents a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to build forward better and to pursue more robust policies. We must to seize the opportunity to pivot towards inclusive and sustainable development.

The report suggests that countries of the Arab States region have an opportunity now to pursue a new development paradigm centred on a refreshed social contract that focuses on inclusive and sustainable development and leaving no one behind.

The report serves as an opening framework and benchmark for a forthcoming series of policy papers, which will provide in-depth analyses of specific sectors and dynamics to present more detailed policy options of relevance to countries across the region. The policy papers will be issued successively in the first quarter of 2021.

The report presents UNDP's first comprehensive regional analysis in the context of COVID-19. It draws on a series of regional background papers and published studies, as well as published country-level analysis including the Socio-Economic Impact Assessments coordinated by UNDP Country Offices across the region.


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