Report reveals horrifying cost of conflict to Syria, its neighbours and its children

  • The cost of conflict to Syria is an estimated US$275 billion in lost growth opportunities.
  • If the conflict continues to 2020, the cost of conflict to Syria will be US$1.3 trillion.
  • The EU and Its Member States must provide greater support for Syrian children and their families, particularly in hard-to-reach areas

US$275 billion, US$689 billion, US$1.3 trillion. These mind-boggling figures, revealed in a new report released today by aid agency World Vision, highlight how far the persistent and horrifying costs for Syria, its neighbours, and its children, have risen and are likely to rise further in the future. “The US$275 billion this war has already cost the Syrian economy is lost money. It will never be recovered, never be spent to provide education, health care, safe environments, livelihoods or a future for children,” said Conny Lenneberg, Regional Leader for World Vision’s Middle East programmes.

Today, World Vision will launchThe Cost of Conflict for Children report, a collaboration between World Vision and Frontier Economics. The launch will take place in the Permanent Representation of Germany to the EU. “This stunning report shows the devastating impact of the conflict on children's health and education services in Syria where 24.5 million years of schooling have been lost” says Justin Byworth, World Vision Brussels’ Executive Director. “The need for the EU and its Member States to invest in the future of children in Syria and across the region and to protect children and families that are caught in, or fleeing from, the conflict has never been clearer”

Five long years of the Syrian conflict has left millions of Syrian children out of school, unable to access essential health services and suffering from malnutrition. As numbers of those fleeing violence in Syria rise, needs are outstripping available resources more than ever. Families are left facing increasingly desperate choices including entering their children into early marriage and child labour, just to help the family survive.

“This new research is another way of demonstrating the urgency with which the international community must mobilise its collective diplomatic influence to end this conflict once and for all,” said Fran Charles, World Vision’s Syria Crisis Response Advocacy Director, “It will take decades for Syria to recover. We need peace now so we can start planning for the enormous task of the reconstruction and long-term investment Syria will need to get back on its feet.”

World Vision is on the ground in Syria and surrounding countries, providing food, health assistance, education, cash transfers, protection for children, clean water, sanitation and items to help families through the harsh winter. Since 2011, World Vision has assisted approximately 2.37 million refugees, internally displaced people and vulnerable host community members affected by the Syrian crisis.



World Vision is a Christian relief, development and advocacy organisation dedicated to working with children, families and communities worldwide to reach their full potential by tackling the causes of poverty and injustice. It works in close to 100 countries in most regions of the world including Latin America and the Caribbean, Europe, Africa, the Middle East and the Asia Pacific Region.

World Vision Brussels’ office represents World Vision members in 12 European countries, including 10 EU member states, as well as the wider international World Vision partnership. 

For more information, please contact Ludovic Wahis, Policy and Communications Officer, World Vision Brussels & EU Representation, +32 (0) 2 274 18 67,