The unemployment rate in Slovakia reached 14.41 percent in April, going down by 0.27 percentage points month-on-month, announced Labour Minister Ján Richter at a press conference on Monday, May 20. The number of job applicants ready to start work immediately stood at 388,948, which represents a drop of 7,304 in monthly terms.
"The unemployment rate calculated from the overall number of job applicants [including those who are not able to start working immediately] reached 15.64 percent, going down by 0.34 percentage points in a monthly comparison. The overall number of jobseekers in April 2013 stood at 422,071, so it fell by 9,311 when compared to March," said Richter as quoted by the TASR newswire. He also expressed his hope that the unemployment rate will decrease to 14 percent within this year.
Unemployment fell in all regions, but the steepest drop - 0.56 percent - was reported in Banská Bystrica Region. Prešov Region remained the only region whose unemployment rate exceeded 20 percent (20.52 percent). Rimavská Sobota was the district with the highest unemployment rate in Slovakia (33.96 percent), with the Bratislava I district recording the lowest rate (4.39 percent). More than half of all jobless Slovaks (55.3 percent) are long-term unemployed, meaning two years or more. In addition, the number of jobless youth (below 25 years of age) reached almost 76,400, including 24,640 school-leavers and graduates.
Slovak central bank (NBS) analysts attribute April’s drop in the official unemployment rate to seasonal work, but once this is taken out of the picture, the number of unemployed saw a slight rise. "The rate of registered unemployment grew by 0.1 percentage point to 14.5 percent. This development was once again influenced by a slight decrease in the number of individuals on sick leave and practicum and, therefore, after leaving this factor out of the account, the overall April unemployment rate grew slightly by 0.05 percentage point to 15.70 percent," NBS analysts said for TASR. The number of job seekers and unemployment rate sees a gradual month-on-month decrease every year in the springtime due to the availability of seasonal work.
According to NBS, the process of job creation has slowed down. Despite the fact that there was a mild revival of economic activity, as documented by the growing figures of GDP and industrial production, this growth is still inadequate to affect more pronounced improvement in terms of the creation of permanent jobs, said the analysts.
Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
The Slovak Spectator cannot vouch for the accuracy of the information presented in its Flash News postings.
21. May 2013 at 10:00