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Home >> News Brief

Keep jobs in nucleus of economic recovery to avoid scars in society: OECD
By TII News Service
Jul 07, 2021 , Paris


THE strong economic recovery underway across OECD countries is yet to fully translate into enough new jobs to get employment levels back to pre-pandemic levels in most member economies according to a new OECD repor

The OECD Employment Outlook 2021  says that across OECD countries around 22 million jobs were lost across OECD countries in 2020 compared to 2019 and 114 million around the world. In the OECD area, despite a partial recovery, there are still over 8 million more unemployed than before the crisis, and over 14 million more people not actively looking for a job. The employment rate (the share of working age people in employment) in OECD countries will still be below pre-pandemic levels by the end of 2022, according to the Outlook.

Hours worked in low-paying occupations fell by over 28% across the OECD, 18 percentage points more than the fall seen among high-paying occupations. The number of young people not in employment, education or training (NEET) increased by almost 3 million, reversing the trend of the past decade. By the end of 2020 the average NEET rate of 15-29 year-olds, at 12%, remained a full percentage point above that of the previous year.

The  OECD unemployment rate  decreased marginally in May 2021, to 6.6% (from 6.7% in April 2021), remaining 1.3 percentage points (pp) above its pre-pandemic level observed in February 2020. The corresponding number of unemployed workers in the OECD area was 43.5 million in May 2021, 8.1 million higher than in February 2020. At 13.6% in May 2021, the OECD youth unemployment rate remained 2.2 pp above its pre-pandemic level. There are significant disparities across countries in the size of the economic shock and the speed of the recovery, with differences between May 2021 and February 2020 unemployment rates ranging from more than 4 pp in some countries (e.g. Colombia and Costa Rica) to close to 0  in others (e.g. Australia and France). 

"It will be very important to get policy settings right to encourage business investment and job creation, as well as to drive the necessary upskilling, re-skilling and skills matching required to ensure everyone has the best possible opportunity to participate and benefit from the recovery", OECD Secretary-General Mathias Cormann said, launching the report in Paris. 

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