Report: Arab Spring cost $50 billion

Oct. 14, 2011 at 8:42 AM
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CAIRO, Oct. 14 (UPI) -- The Arab Spring protests in North Africa and the Middle East cost the region more than $50 billion, says a report from Geopolicity, a consulting firm.

Geopolicity said Egypt, Syria and Libya took the biggest hits because of the protests, the BBC reported Friday.

Using International Monetary Fund data, the Geopolicity report said countries that experienced intensive disturbances or conflict during the Arab Spring were expected to lose the most in the near term.

Oil-producing nations that avoided or suppressed rebellions have benefited, the report said.

The report's authors said a more precise cost of the Arab Spring couldn't be determined, the BBC reported.

"Many critical economic indicators are unavailable and the situation is highly fluid," the report said.

Libya, Syria, Egypt, Tunisia, Bahrain and Yemen were hit hard economically, the report said. The cost to the countries' gross domestic product totaled about $20.56 billion and the cost to public finance totaled $35.28 billion.

Yemen and Libya had public expenditures fall alongside public revenues, the report said. It said there was a 77 percent fall in revenues in Yemen and an 84 percent drop in Libya.

The report's figures don't include losses to human life or infrastructure damage, the BBC said.

The report said the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait and Saudi Arabia all increased public revenues during the wave of protests.

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