DAMASCUS, Jan. 24 (Xinhua) -- With the passing of every additional year in its crisis, Syria will be going backward eight years and losing millions of pounds every minute, according to an economic report published Friday by the local al-Ektisadi private economic website.
As attention has been shifted to Geneva where the Syrian government and the Western-backed opposition will meet face-to- face on Saturday for the first time in almost three years, the website issued a report, warning that unless the Syrian crisis is brought to an end soon, the economic conditions are devastatingly sloping down.
The report said that Syria is losing millions of Syrian pounds every passing minute as hundreds of people are losing their jobs on monthly bases in addition to the large number of others who are losing their lives as a result to the ongoing battles.
"With the passing of every new year in its crisis, Syria is going backward eight years according to development and economic indicators," the report said, adding that drop-out rate among students reached 38 percent and unemployment reached 42 percent.
On the eve of the peace talks in Geneva between the Syrian government and the opposition, a number of experts urged the key players in the conference to push ahead with the political solution to the crisis that has displaced more than six million Syrians and impoverished nearly half of the country's 23 million inhabitants.
According to recent estimate by the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA), Syria has lost 37 percent of development and has fallen to the penultimate place among the Arab states, according to development indicators.
The Syrian Oil Minister Hassan Zeinab said lately that the damages inflicted on the oil sector over the past years amounted to more than 1,600 billion pounds.
He indicated that as soon as the crisis is brought to an end, Syria has all capabilities to reproduce 50 percent of its previous oil production in one year and 100 percent in the second year.
A recent report published by the country's official media said that the financial losses of the energy sector alone have amounted to two trillion pounds since the beginning of war in March 2011 till the end of September 2013.
Syrian Industry Minister Kamal el-Deen Taemeh revealed that the losses of the industrial sector have amounted to 336 billion pounds (2.2 billion U.S. dollars) since the start of the crisis in the country nearly three years ago.
The United Nations Development Program (UNDP) issued recently a report on the second quarter of 2013, indicating that the loss of the Syrian economy amounted to 103 billion dollars, up from 84 billion in the first quarter of the same year, meaning thus that the losses were at a rate of about 200 million dollars per day.