26 March 2017

Ghana: More Than 1.2 Million People in Ghana Are Unemployed - Report

More than 1.2 million persons from 15 years and older are estimated to be unemployed, representing the total unemployment rate of 11.9%, according to the Labour Force Survey Report.

Of this number, about 714,916 are females, representing 57.2 per cent and 535,997 for males representing 42.8%.

The 2015 Ghana Labour Force Survey Report commissioned by the Ghana Statistical Service (GSS) on Thursday revealed that females were more likely to be unemployed than their male counterparts.

The main objective of the report was to collect basic statistics on the labour force situation in Ghana and make labour statistics available to the public for making decisions that aim at improving the employment situation.

It is also to estimate the number of persons in the labour force - employed, under-employed and unemployed - and also provide data needed for the monitoring and evaluation of the impact of labour policies and programmes and provide up-to-date information for assessing the labour force situation in the country.

In the area of education, the unemployment rate was relatively higher for persons with education than those with no education and similarly, unemployment rate was highest for persons with secondary education than those with Middle School Leaving Certificate or Basic Education Certificate Examination certificates.

Mr Owusu Kagya, an Official of Ghana Statistical Service presenting the report, said nearly one in six of 733,522 of the unemployed were located in urban areas and 41.4% of the 517,391 population were in rural areas.

He said persons with tertiary education have the lowest unemployment rate in the country.

He said majority of the currently employed were in vulnerable employment with about five million of the currently employed persons being self-employed.

"More than half of females (64.8 per cent or 2,801,262), who are currently employed are self-employed with a relatively small number working as paid employees," he added.

He said the labour market was characterised by the dominance of the private informal sector, contrary to what was observed in the past where agriculture and related activities were the major employer of the working population.

The survey revealed that 4.2 million persons, representing more than half, 52.5 per cent of the currently employed were engaged in the private informal sector.

"Agricultural businesses engaged 2.1 million of those in current employment," he added.

Mr Ignatius Baffour-Awuah, the Minister of Employment and Labour Relations, said the report would enable the Ministry to develop targeted employment and labour-related plans, programmes and policies that would reflect the true employment situation at the national, regional and district levels.

He urged the GSS to regularly produce the Labour Force Survey report to serve as a basis to determine the true employment picture in the country.

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