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ILO report: Global unemployment fall to 5.3%, low-income nations lag in Recovery

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According to the International Labour Organisation (ILO)’s 11th edition ‘World of Work’, the global unemployment is projected to fall below pre pandemic levels to 191 million, corresponding to an unemployment rate of 5.3% in 2023. 

  • The report highlighted that the low-income countries may remain far behind in the recovery process.
  • The report also calls for global financial support for job creation and social protection.

Global Job Gap:

i.In 2023, the global jobs gap is projected to at 453 million people or 11.7%, which is more than double the unemployment count.

  • The global jobs gap of 453 million includes both the 191 million unemployed people and an additional 262 million who want employment but do not qualify as unemployed.

ii.Unequal Job Gaps: 

  • Based on the repot, in 2023, the lowincome countries are facing the largest jobs gap rate at 21.5%, and the rate in middle-income countries stands slightly above 11%. Whereas the High-income countries register the lowest rates, at 8.2%.
  • Women  face a jobs gap rate of 14.5%, compared to 9.8% for men.

Unemployment – Low-income Countries Left Behind:

i.As per the report’s projection, low-income countries in the Arab and African region will not be able to recover to the pre-Covid levels of unemployment in 2023.

  • For North Africa, the unemployment rate in 2023 is projected to be 11.2% (10.9% in 2019); for Sub-Saharan Africa, 6.3% (5.7% in 2019); and for the Arab States 9.3% (8.7% in 2019).

ii.Unemployment rate in other regions:

  • Latin America and the Caribbean have managed to reduce their unemployment rates substantially below to pre-Covid levels (6.7% as compared to 8% in 2019).
  • Northern, Southern, and Western Europe have reduced their unemployment rate to 6.3% from 7% in 2019.
  • Central and Western Asia now has 7.8% unemployment as against 9.2% in 2019.

Social protection policy gaps:

i.In terms of Old age pension, lower-middle-income and low-income countries’ older persons receiving just 38.6% and 23.2% of pension respectively, compared to 77.5% globally.

ii.The ILO monitor discovered that the introduction of universal basic old age pension in the developing national will increase its GDP per capita by 14.8% within 10 years.

iii.This will also reduce the extreme poverty (share of people who live on less than USD 2.15  per day) by 6% points from the current rate of 15.5%.

Suggestions of the report: 

i.ILO suggested the requirement for global financial support for job creation and social protection during a time of multiple crises and shocks to ensure that recovery and reconstruction will leave no one behind and support long-term structural transformation.

ii.It stated that the investment towards people through jobs and social protection will support to reduce the gap between rich and poor nations and people.

iii.The report emphasize the importance of creating fiscal space for social investments in low-income countries.

Additional info: Sri Lanka has been hit by a series of crises, starting with the Easter bombings in 2019 and followed by the COVID-19 pandemic, as per the report, the economy is expected to contract by 3.0% in 2023.

Recent Related News:

The second ILO–UNICEF (International Labour Organization – United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund) joint report on social protection for children titled ‘More than a billion reasons: The urgent need to build universal social protection for children’ was released on March 01, 2023.

About International Labour Organisation (ILO):

Director-General – Gilbert Fossoun Houngbo
Headquarters – Geneva , Switzerland
Establishment – 1919