Beaten or broken: Informality and COVID-19
The World Bank in its latest South Asia report titled “Beaten or broken: Informality and COVID-19” has said that extended closure of schools amid the COVID-19 pandemic could dent India’s future earnings by anywhere between $420 billion and $600 billion, as depleted learning levels of students will translate into poorer productivity going forward, the World Bank has said.
Findings of the report
- Warning that as many as 5.5 million students could drop out of schools across South Asia, the bank has said dropouts, combined with substantial learning losses for those who remain enrolled in schools, would cost South Asia as much as $622 billion in future earnings and gross domestic product.
- This figure could climb further to $880 billion, as per a more pessimistic scenario envisaged by the bank on the lifetime impact of school closures on the productivity of this generation of students.
- The average child in South Asia may lose $4,400 in lifetime earnings once having entered the labor market, equivalent to 5% of total earnings.
- The projected learning loss for the region is 0.5 years of learning-adjusted years of schooling at present, and this will already lead to substantial future earning losses, the bank estimated.
- Disruptions to training, schooling, and other education in the event of severe income losses, even once restrictions are lifted, will also lower human capital and labour productivity over the long term,” the report concluded.