Impact of COVID-19 on Islamic social finance

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COVID-19 is considered by some as a 'black swan event', which is a pandemic that is unpredictable, unprepared for, and totally spontaneous (Gubler, 2020). This pandemic is different from four other recent pandemics the world has witnessed within the last 25 years (Gubler, 2020) as its impact has created not only a health crisis, but has led to an economic as well as human crisis brought due to a halt in all major economic activities in the world. The impact of COVID-19 on the sudden increase of poverty is uncontainable. By 12 March 2020, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared COVID-19 a pandemic, as, since December 2019, the disease had been spreading worldwide, putting the world population at risk. Simultaneously, the number of unemployed increased turning back the poverty clock (Kharas & Hamei, 2020). This is because as Sumner et al. (2020; p.2) state: 'global poverty could increase for the first time since 1990 and, depending on the poverty line, such increase could represent a reversal of approximately a decade in the world's progress in reducing poverty'. They also observe that in some regions, the poverty levels could be what they were exactly 30 years ago (Sumner et al., 2020) ruining the progress that has been achieved by the world so far in this regard. According to the International Labour Organization (ILO), the continuous decline in working hours globally due to COVID-19 means that 1.6 billion workers in the informal economy, which is nearly half of the global workforce, are at immediate risk of losing their livelihood (ILO, 2020).
COVID-19 , Health crisis , Islamic finance , Economic crisis , Poverty
Hassan, M. K., Muneeza, A., & Sarea, A. M. (2021). Impact of COVID-19 on Islamic social finance. In M. K. Hassan, A. Muneeza, & A. M. Sarea (Eds.), COVID-19 and Islamic social finance (pp. 9-23). Abingdon, Oxon: Routledge.

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