Report: Over half of Syrians live in poverty

Published October 26th, 2013 - 08:01 GMT
A Syrian refugee woman watches children playing close to the town of Semalka (Image credit: AFP)
A Syrian refugee woman watches children playing close to the town of Semalka (Image credit: AFP)

A new report released by the U.N. says that Syria’s ongoing civil war has condemned over half the country's population to living in poverty.

“More than half the population now lives in poverty, with 7.9 million people becoming poor since the beginning of the crisis, of which 4.4 million now live in extreme poverty,” the report said according to AFP.

Key economic and social indicators have collapsed in Syria:

  • In the second quarter, Syria’s GDP has shrunk by 39.6 percent as compared to 2012. 
  • By the first quarter of this year, Syria had suffered an economic loss of $103.1 billion – equal to 147% of the country’s GDP in 2010 at constant prices.
  • Unemployment is at 48.6%.
  • Over 49% of children are out of school.

In addition, with the collapse of the formal economy, the report warns that Syria has been overrun by a rise is black marketing and violent activity such as racketeering, extortion, smuggling and criminality that hamper the growth of legitimate businesses.

Over 115,000 people have died in the ongoing Syrian civil war. Earlier this year, a U.N. official said that one third of Syrians were in need of urgent humanitarian aid. 


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