Unemployment remains in double digits in latest stats

The Turkish unemployment rate stood at 10.6 percent in March of this year, a decline from February but a slight rise year-on-year, according to figures released by the Turkish Statistics Institute (TurkStat) on Monday.
Unemployment decreased from 11.2 percent in February but increased from 9.7 percent in March 2014. Youth unemployment remained considerably higher than the overall rate at 18.6 percent, meaning that just under than one in five 15-24 year olds were unable to find work in Turkey.
Non-agricultural unemployment was slightly higher than the average rate at 12.6 percent, owing to the large amount of the countryand’s workforce involved in agricultural labor. One-fifth of jobs in Turkey were agricultural, according to the March TurkStat figures. Meanwhile, an additional 20 percent were employed in the industrial sector, while 52.6 percent of jobs were held in the service industry and 6.9 percent worked in construction.
Unregistered employment stood a 32.7 percent in March, meaning that just under one in three laborers in Turkey worked without social security or other benefits guaranteed by formal employment. The fact that the agricultural sector consists of a vast majority of informal employees contributes significantly to this high figure.
Unemployment has stubbornly remained in the double digits for the past year, while labor participation rates among women have remained disappointingly low. Moreover, unemployment rates in the eastern and southeastern provinces, which are among the poorest in the country, stand at considerably higher levels than other regions.
According to a report by Bahandceiehir Universityand’s Center for Economic and Social Research (BETAM) released last month, while 32.5 percent of young people — some 2.2 million — were enrolled in the education system at some level, the number of those who are neither attending school nor employed is 948,000, at 15.2 percent.
The report showed that 688,000 of those young people out of work and school were women while the remaining 260,000 were men. While the most common reason given by men for their reluctance to seek employment was that they felt discouraged about their prospects, for women the obstacles were said to be occupation with housework, childcare and elderly care.
and”If Turkey wants to escape the middle-income trap, it should invest in its human capital: Turkish youth. It should appeal to young people who are not in school to seek an education as soon as possible,and” argued the report.
Regarding geographical distribution, the report shows the schooling rate to be lowest in southeastern Anatolia, with 51.2 percent, and highest in the western Marmara region, with 73.7 percent.

SOURCE: Today’s Zaman