$55 billion dollars, according to a new report released by consulting group Geopolicity. The report reveals that Egypt, Syria, and Libya were hit the hardest financially by the protests in North Africa and the Middle East. So what do these astronomical prices mean for the region now?
First, it is crucial to note, the report elucidates that the price of the Arab Spring cannot be calculated precisely. But the data does reveal overall trends that are troublesome to those in support of the Arab Spring protestors. Without a regional support program to recuperate, the effects of the Arab Spring could be counterproductive, leaving the intentions of the protestors reversed and money actually consolidated in the hands of the oil-producing nations who avoided or suppressed rebellions altogether.
Unlike the other countries involved in the report, Geopolicity says that Libya’s fate is still uncertain. Politically, the report shows that whatever the outcome of the clashes in Sirte, the National Transitional Council will face a long struggle to convince tribal leaders and ethnic separatists of its mandate to rule. Up until now, Libya has reportedly suffered a loss of $7.67 billion to its GDP.
How can we reconcile the inspiring messages of the protests with their devastating effects to their respective countries’ economies? This, unfortunately, remains unclear.