22 percent youth unemployment
High figures a chronic issue
Unemployment among the local youth reached 22 percent in 2013, according to the Global Employment Trends 2014 report issued by the International Labor Organization. “Limited labor market, low salaries, migration, as well as selecting wrong specializations by many local students is the reason behind the increase in unemployment rates,” said Choghig Kasparian, Professor at Saint Joseph University, and specialist in youth employment studies.
Youth unemployment in MENA countries remains the highest in the world, reaching 27 percent in the Middle East. Prior to the crisis in Syria, the local labor market already suffered from a high unemployment rate. The substantial and quick rise in labor supply will further put pressure on existing jobseekers. “Syrian graduates and job seekers are competing for low level jobs such as salespeople, and not senior vacancies, since companies prefer to employ locals for high positions as engineers and bankers,” said Kasparian.
“Youth unemployment in the MENA region might take longer to recover due to the fact that educated youth may take a longer time to find a job that matches their skills and education,” said the report.
Local participation of women in the labor force is around 25 percent, with a rate of unemployment reaching ten percent.
Reported by Joelle Nassar
Date Posted: Feb 03, 2014