Take a look at the beta version of dw.com. We're not done yet! Your opinion can help us make it better.
Businesses and individuals around the world are facing up to the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. The UN estimates over 24 million people could lose their jobs — if action is not taken now.
More than 24 million people could become unemployed owing to the effects of the global COVID-19 pandemic, the UN announced on Wednesday.
Global unemployment could increase by 5.3 million in a "low" scenario and 24.3 million in a "high" scenario, UN agency the International Labor Organization (ILO) said in a new report.
"However, if we see an internationally coordinated policy response, as happened in the global financial crisis of 2008/9, then the impact on global unemployment could be significantly lower," the ILO wrote on their website. By comparison, 22 million people lost their jobs in this crisis.
The COVID-19 pandemic has already put many businesses under pressure, with some governments pledging economic measures to prevent job losses.
'No longer only a global health crisis'
"This is no longer a global health crisis. It is also a major labor market and economic crisis that is having a huge impact on people," Guy Rider, ILO's director general said.
The report also identifies global levels of so-called working poverty, under which those in employment still live in poverty.
Read more: European stock markets nosedive at open
Between 8.8 million and 35 million people may be in working poverty by the end of 2020 thanks to the effects of COVID-19.
Falls in employment also mean income losses for workers. The UN study puts these at between $860 billion (€793 billion) and $3.4 trillion by the end of 2020.
The report acknowledged the complex variables in predicting the figures.
Keep up to speed with the day's events when it comes to coronavirus with our live updates page.