The cycle of gradual recovery of the Albanian economy from the effects of the pandemic is more reflected in employment indicators during the second quarter of the year.
Instat data showed that the unemployment rate dropped to 11.6%, from 11.9% in the first quarter, but also in the same period last year.
Compared to the same quarter of 2020, the unemployment rate decreased by 0.2 percentage points for men, and by 0.6 percentage points for women.
However, unemployment remains even higher compared to the pre-crisis period. In the last measurement before the country was affected by the pandemic, at the end of 2019, the unemployment rate had been 11.2%.
According to age groups, the most significant development during this quarter is the decline in the unemployment rate in the most fragile segment, that of youth, and its increase in the most consolidated age group in the labor market, that over 30 years. According to Instat, the unemployment rate for young people aged 15-29 dropped to a record 19.9%, from 23.3% in the previous quarter and 21.4% in the second quarter of 2020. This is the lowest unemployment rate of youth ever registered in the Labor Force Survey data series.
For the 30-65 age group, the unemployment rate in the second quarter rose to 9.5%, from 9.1% in the first quarter and returning to the same level as in the II quarter 2020.
Improvements in the labor market are also illustrated by the increase in the employment rate, which for the 15-64 age group has increased to 60.7%, from 59% in the first quarter and 59.6% in the same period last year. Even in the employment rate, the greatest effect was given by young people, where the employment rate increased to 41.6%, from 38.9% in the first quarter. Employment has also increased in the 30-64 age group, to 70.2%, from 69% in the previous quarter. This indicates that the parallel increase in the unemployment rate for this age group may be related to an increasing participation in the labor market. The labor force participation rate for the working age population aged 15-64 increased to 51.7%, from 50.5% in the first quarter, but remains at a slightly lower level compared to the second quarter of last year .
By sectors, it seems that the main impact on employment growth during the second quarter was given by industry, with 10.8% more compared to a year ago. The services sector also made a positive contribution, with an annual increase in employment of 3.1%, while agriculture decreased significantly, with the number of employees shrinking by 6.6%.
Despite the generally positive trend in employment indicators, during the second quarter there was a slight increase in the discouraged, who are that part of the inactive population (aged 15-64) who do not look for work because they do not believe they can find. In the second quarter they accounted for 11.6% of the inactive population, up from 11.2% in the first quarter of the year.