Unemployment down to 5.4% in Q2
By Mario Andree
Sri Lanka’s unemployment rated contracted to 5.4 per cent during the second quarter (Q2) of this year from 5.7 per cent recorded during the first quarter of this year, though the rate was higher than 4.9 per cent recorded during the same period of last year.
According to the Department of Census and Statistics, during the second quarter of this year the total numbers of unemployed individuals were 458,359.
The total number of economically active population during the quarter under review stood at 8.43 million, of which 4.62 million were working as employees, while 181,637 working as employers and 2.6 million were own account workers and 557,012 were contributing family workers.
According to the Department of Census and Statistics out of the 8.43 million economically active individuals 66.3 per cent were males and 33.7 per cent were females.
The economically inactive population reached 8.35 million during the quarter under review, of which 26.4 per cent were males and 73.6 per cent were females.
The labour force participation rate during the second quarter of this year declined to 50.2 per cent compared to 52.6 per cent recorded during the same period of last year.
Individuals employed in the services sector declined to 46 per cent during the second quarter of this year from 47.5 per cent in the second quarter of 2019, while employees in the industrial sector declined to 26.9 from 28.3 per cent.
However, those who are engaged in the agricultural sector increased to 27.1 per cent during the second quarter of this year from 24.3 per cent recorded a year earlier.
Female unemployment across all age groups during the second quarter of this year declined to 8.2 per cent from 9.6 per cent recorded during the first quarter of this year, though it was up from 7.5 per cent recorded during the same quarter of 2019.
Youth unemployment rate (age 15 – 24 years) for the first quarter of this year was 27.7 per cent and that reports the highest unemployment rate among all other age groups. Further, unemployment rates for both male and female are 24.1 per cent and 34.4 per cent respectively for the age group.
The highest unemployment rate was reported from the G.C.E (A/L) and above educated group at 10 per cent. Male unemployment in the particular educated group stood at 6.3 per cent, while female unemployment for the group was 14.2 per cent.
The unemployment rate of the country hovered around 4 per cent to 6 per cent since 2011, with unemployment of males hovering between 2.5 per cent to 4.5 per cent, while female unemployment hovered around 6 per cent to 10 per cent.