The Albanian Institute of Statistics (INSTAT) has reported that during the second quarter of 2017 the unemployment rate in Albania has decreased to 13.9%. This is the lowest level of unemployment since 2012. In 2014 the level of unemployment reached the highest level – a record 18.2% – and since than it has been constantly declining.
The unemployment rate is slightly lower for women, at 12.5% compared to unemployment of men which is 14.9%. A 3.4 percentage point decrease has been noted in the unemployment rate of young people between 15-29 years. The unemployment rate for this age group was 26.4% in the second quarter of 2017, which is 7.8 percentage points lower than the same period of 2015.
One of the main factors that have driven down the rate of unemployment is the increase in the number of employed individuals, which shows a 3.4 percentage points’ increase over the same period of 2016, and 1.8 percentage point increase in comparison to the first quarter of 2017. The services sector notes the largest increase with 9%, whereas the industry sector employment scale has increased by 2.5%. The agriculture sector’s employment decreased by 1.7%.
The above INSTAT data have been additionally confirmed by a report presented by the Bank of Albania, based on a questionnaire performed among 1209 Albanian families. According to the data published by the Bank of Albania, the unemployment decrease is due to an increase of the employment particularly in the public services sector and related to the general election in June 2017 in Albania, as well as the electoral campaign that preceded them. Due to these positive developments in the labor market, the Bank of Albania noticed that the level of family incomes and the level of expenditures have been increasing during this period, but the increase in expenditures has turned out to be greater, causing a narrowing of the financial balance of Albanian families.
Several experts argue that one of the reasons for the decrease of unemployment is due to a considerable number of young Albanians leaving the country.
Meanwhile, the Albanian Government has declared its will to lower the unemployment rate aiming at a one-digit level, as noted in its Political Program, approved through Decision no.84/2017 of the Parliament of the Republic of Albania.
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