The 2021 LFS Report indicates unemployment rate was significantly higher at 9.6 per cent in TL

The 2021 LFS Report indicates unemployment rate was significantly higher at 9.6 per cent in TL

Photo Tatoli/Francisco Sony

DILI, 26 january 2023 (TATOLI)- Timor – Leste recorded a 9.6 percent unemployment rate, this number including 30.5 percent of youth aged 15- 24 who are not engaged in employment, education, or internship training.

The rate was recorded in the Timor-Leste 2021 Labour Force Survey Report, launched today by the Minister of Finance, Rui Agostu Gomes, the Secretary of State for Vocational Training and Employment, and the Country Director of International Labour Organization for Indonesia and Timor-Leste, Michiko Miyamoto.

According to the results of the Labour Force Survey, the working-age population aged 15 years and above in Timor-Leste in 2021 was 809.3 thousand, with slightly more women (405.8 thousand) than men (403. 6 thousand).

The labor force, constituting women and men that were either employed or unemployed, totaled 247 thousand. The labor force participation rate was 30.5 percent overall, with a sharp disparity between women (24.2 percent) and men (36.9 percent).

While, in terms of the distribution of the labor force by educational attainment, 30.7 percent had non-formal education or had not completed primary schooling. Conversely, 16.8 percent had at least some tertiary education.

In total, amounted to 234. 3 thousand, comprising 142 thousand men and 92.3 thousand women.

The report also revealed that Nearly half (48.5 percent) of all workers were classified as wage employees, while 50.3 percent were self-employed as either an own-account worker or a contributing family worker. Women compared to men were more likely to be self-employed and less likely to be in wage employment.

Unemployment totaled 12.7 thousand, indicating a general unemployment rate of 5.1 percent. Unemployment among female jobseekers was higher (5.9 percent) relative to their male counterparts (4.6 percent). For young people aged 15-24 years, the unemployment rate was significantly higher at 9.6 percent.

828 thousand youth people aged 15-24 years were not in employment, education, or training (NEET) in 2021, representing 30.5 percent of young people in this age group. Young women were more like to be NEET than young men (31.3 percent compared to 29.8 percent, respectively).

Employment by economic activity, 59.1 percent of total employment was based in the service sector, whereas agriculture and industry accounted for 26.9 percent and 13.5 percent respectively.

With the launching of the report, Minister of Finance Rui Agosto Gomes said, that the Report is the third full stand-alone Labour Force Survey Report in Timor – Leste since the country’s independence, aiming to collect, analyze, and disseminate statical information on the labor Force to support evidence-based policy and program formulation and monitoring.

“The survey provides important indicators and the labor market for identification of needs relating to the creation of employment for all the Timorese. It will also provide indicators that will help develop important long-term policies that address the needs of the current and future labor market,” said Minister of Finance Rui Augusto Gomes at the launching of the report, in the Ministry of Finance Office Aitarak laran Dili.

Meanwhile, the Secretary of State for Vocational Training and Employment, Alarico do Rosario, highlighted the importance of addressing the country’s unemployment rate, particularly the youth unemployment rate.

” The survey report indicates the general unemployment rate has reached 5.1 % with a far greater youth unemployment rate at 9.6%. These data will be used by the Government as an indicator for the implementation of more measurable governmental Programmes and initiatives that will focus on providing more job opportunities and income generation activities,” he said.

At the same place, ILO Country Director, Michiko Miyamoto also said it is important to develop future employment policies and programs that can absorb youth into the labor market and enhance youth entrepreneurship.

” The finding reveals that 30.5 percent of youth aged 15- 24 are not engaged in employment, education, or internship training. Thus, there is an urgent need to create more decent job and skills development opportunities for youth that allow them to participate in the labor market, she said.

So far the 2021 Labour Force Survey Report was conducted randomly from 7.275 households in Timor-Leste.



Journalist: Camilio de Sousa 

Editor : Nelia B.


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