From the TUC

Global youth unemployment to rise to 71 million in 2016

25 Aug 2016, by in Economics

Global unemployment is expected to rise to 71 million in 2016, an increase of ½ million from 2015.

The unemployment rate is expected to reach 13.1% in 2016, up from 12.9% in 2015 and close to the 20-year peak of 13.2% in 2013. The ILO expects no improvement in 2017.

The global youth unemployment rate is more than double the global unemployment rate, which stood at 5.8% in 2015 and was (as of January) expected to be unchanged into 2016.

Global youth unemployment rates, per cent


The figures were issued yesterday by the International Labour Organization, under the headline ‘global youth unemployment is on the rise again’ (here).

The renewed rises in youth unemployment come following deep recessions in “key emerging commodity-exporting countries, including Argentina, Brazil and the Russian Federation” (Report, p. vii). In parallel improvements in developed economies have slowed, and the unemployment rate in developing economies continues steadily to rise.

The ILO warn that while unemployment figures for developing and emerging countries look low, they need to be judged alongside figures for in-work poverty:

The fact that youth unemployment rates in emerging and developing countries are lower than the corresponding rates in developed countries does not reflect more favourable labour market conditions in those regions; instead, it indicates that young people in these countries must often work, typically in poor-quality and low-paid jobs, in order to provide the basic necessities of life for themselves and their families … . This issue is particularly acute in developing countries, where almost three-quarters of all employed youth (close to 54 million in 2017) are living below the moderate poverty threshold of US$3.10 per day [my emphasis]

Their chilling summary:

Altogether, available estimates suggest that, in 2016, over 40 per cent of the world’s active youth population is expected to be either unemployed or living in poverty despite being employed.

Can there be a greater injustice than the youth of the world paying the highest price for the failure of a global economic system not of their making?