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Majority of those laid off during pandemic were women — study

By JT - Sep 29,2021 - Last updated at Sep 29,2021

Minister of Industry, Trade and Supply Maha Al Ali speaks during the launch ceremony of study on Tuesday (Petra photo)

AMMAN — Almost 74 per cent of those who were laid off during the COVID-19 pandemic were women.

The findings were released in a study titled, “The Economic Impact of COVID-19 on Women-Owned Enterprises in Jordan”, conducted by the Jordanian Business and Professional Women Forum and the Centre for International Private Enterprise (CIPE).

The study, conducted between December 2020 and May 2021, found that 70 per cent of women-owned businesses sought external financing to keep their workers on payroll, according to the Jordan News Agency, Petra.

The sample included 503 businesses, 74 per cent of which were micro-enterprises, followed by medium- and small-sized enterprises at 4 and 22 per cent, respectively.

Only 2.5 per cent of the sample has managed to benefit from the loans offered by the Central Bank of Jordan’s support programme, introduced by Defence Order No. 4, the study indicated.

The lockdowns have forced 50 per cent of women-owned enterprises to lower their prices to compete and 30 per cent of women-owned enterprises to reduce the number of their workers, the results showed. 

The results added that during the study’s period, only 6 per cent women-owned enterprises have resumed operations.

During the launch ceremony of the study held on Tuesday, Minister of Industry, Trade and Supply Maha Al Ali said that the ministry will follow up on the recommendations of the study and offer the necessary assistance.

President of the Jordanian Business and Professional Women Forum Reem Al Baghdadi said that the study is meant to identify challenges and obstacles faced by businesswomen during the pandemic.

She highlighted the forum’s keenness on sharing the study's findings with government stakeholders to address the issue.

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