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LATIN AMERICA / THE CARIBBEAN
Urban unemployment keeps rising
Latinamerica Press
11/20/2017
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Young people are the most affected by the deterioration of labour markets as a result of economic contraction.

Since 2014, the Latin American and Caribbean economy has experienced a very low or even negative growth rates that have heavily impacted labour markets, according to the report “Employment Situation in Latin America and the Caribbean: The transition of young people from school to the labour market,” released on Oct. 19 by the Economic Commission for Latin America and The Caribbean (ECLAC) and the International Labour Organization (ILO).

The report states that in the last three years “a decline in the regional employment rate drove up the urban unemployment rate in 2015 and, especially, in 2016. This negative tendency continued in the first half of 2017.” According to ECLAC and ILO, the region wide urban unemployment rate could come in at around 9.4 percent, an increase of 0.5 percentage points from the 8.9 percent recorded in 2016.

“Young people tend to be among the hardest hit by downturns in labour markets,” stated Alicia Bárcena, ECLAC’S Executive Secretary, and José Manuel Salazar, ILO’s Regional Director, in the publication’s foreword. “They also face structural problems of integration into employment and decent work.”

“Young people’s paths into the labour market in the region are found to be generally much longer than in the developed countries, something that is heavily shaped by the role of women, often still centered on caregiving and household activities,” they added.

According to the report, “the weakness of labour markets in the region is also evident in the quality of employment. In the first half of 2017, employment creation grew faster in the category of self-employment than wage employment.”

ECLAC and ILO estimate that the region’s low economic growth will continue affecting the labour market.

“The main trends in employment composition are not expected to change either. In particular, the bulk of new jobs created in the region will continue to be in own-account work,” the report stated. —Latinamerica Press.


LATIN AMERICA/THE CARIBBEAN

Proportion of young people combining work and study (2014)
 

Country
Porcentage
Bolivia
20.3
Paraguay
18.5
Brazil
16.9
Peru
15.3
Colombiaa
11.4
Guatemala
11.3
Dominican Republic
11.0
Mexico
10.7
El Salvador
10.1
Panama
9.4
Honduras
8.8
Ecuador
7.5
Uruguay
7.3
Venezuela
6.9
Costa Rica
5.0
Argentina
4.6
Chile
4.0
Source: ECLAC/OIT

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