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ILO: Global unemployment rate to rise by 5.8% in 2023

The International Labour Organisation (ILO) says global unemployment rate will rise by 5.8 percent in 2023.

This is contained in a new ILO report, titled ‘World Employment and Social Outlook: Trends 2023 (WESO Trends)’, published on its website.

It also projected that the global employment growth would be only 1.0 per cent in 2023, less than half the level in 2022.

ILO noted that the moderate size of this projected increase was largely due to tight labour supply in high-income countries.

“This would mark a reversal of the decline in global unemployment seen between 2020 and 2022. It means that global unemployment will remain 16 million above the pre-crisis benchmark (set in 2019),” the report said.

The report also mentioned that global economic slowdown was likely to force more workers to accept lower quality, poorly paid jobs which lack job security and social protection.

It said the situation would also accentuate inequalities exacerbated by the COVID-19 crisis and that in addition to unemployment, job quality remained a key concern, adding that decent work was fundamental to social justice.

ILO further noted that a decade of progress in poverty reduction faltered during the COVID-19 crisis, worried despite a nascent recovery during 2021, the continuing shortage of better job opportunities was likely to worsen.

“The current slowdown means that many workers will have to accept lower quality jobs, often at very low pay, sometimes with insufficient hours. Furthermore, as prices rise faster than nominal labour incomes, the cost-of-living crisis risks pushing more people into poverty,” stated the ILO report.

According to the study, this trend comes on top of significant declines in income seen during the COVID-19 crisis, which in many countries affected low-income groups.

The report also identified a new comprehensive measure of unmet need for employment – the global jobs gap.

“This is as well as those who are unemployed, this measure includes people who want employment but are not actively searching for a job. This is either because they are discouraged or because they have other obligations such as care responsibilities,” it said.

The report, however, noted that the global jobs gap stood at 473 million in 2022, around 33 million above the level of 2019.


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