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BEIRUT, Jan. 8 (Xinhua) — The economic recovery is likely to continue in the Arab region and the regional gross domestic product (GDP) is likely to grow by 3.7 percent in 2022 and 3.6 percent in 2023, according to a survey released on Saturday by the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA).

The extent of the recovery will vary among countries due to several factors, such as the speed of vaccination campaigns, oil and tourism revenues, remittances inflows and development aid flows, the reported noted.

The GDP in conflict-affected Arab countries is expected to grow by almost 4.5 percent in 2022 and 6.9 percent in 2023. However, the Omicron variant could have a severe impact in these countries due to their weakened ability to deal with emergency health crises, it said.

The GDP in least developed Arab countries will grow by about 2 percent in 2022 and 2.6 percent in 2023, but the Omicron variant may also slow down GDP growth in these countries to 1.7 percent in 2022, it added.

Ahmed Moummi, lead author of the survey, noted that poverty rates in the Arab region are expected to decrease from 27 percent in 2021 to 26 percent in 2023, with differences among sub-regions.

Unemployment rates are expected to decrease from 11.8 percent in 2021 to 10.7 percent in 2023, however, they will remain among the highest worldwide, especially those of women and youth, he warned. Enditem